Archive for the ‘change’ Tag

No Good Thing   Leave a comment

Every so often, and much more than I would like, something or some one I thought was essential to my existence goes away.

It can be a friend, a store I liked to shop at, something as small as a flower or plant in the yard that just gives up the ghost.  It’s actually not usually anything big, thank heavens.  Also, more than likely I won’t notice the something small or medium that’s gone, until it’s been a couple years down the road, because you know how those things are–you usually don’t lose something all at once.  It just fades.

So my funny example is Yahoogroups.  Mailing lists and groups used to be all the rage.  Just such a list kept my sanity through many years when my children were small.  I am still in contact with the friends I made there.  Contact is rare, though not finished (thanks to social media, which is usually another of God’s good gifts).  However, those Yahoogroups that I could not have lived without 15, 10 years ago?  Today, they are mainly silent, and mostly extinct.  I only know of two that are still going, with diminished volume.  I had just gotten used to having a safe place to vent and share my heart!  Life has moved on to other means of doing things, and I do feel the loss.

I am thankful for what it was while it lasted, and today, I strung these thoughts together as a way to acknowledge the change and what I miss, but what I’m looking toward:

Lord, thank you for the good gifts you gave me today.

Thank you for each thing good about today, even though I know I may not receive these gifts again.

Thank you that, even if after today there’s a long blank in my life, I know that in the far future all will be good, better than I can imagine.

And I thank you that some day, the far future will be near.


Posted February 8, 2015 by swanatbagend in reality

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Communication and Interaction: Tips for What you May Notice When You’re Over 40   Leave a comment

Anyone who’s under 40 should definitely read this. Maybe even under 35.

I have a few observations that might be helpful to you as you get older.

The rules change as you get older, and although it might not have done me any good, I wish someone told me these things.  Here’s what I have noticed.

1.  In any group social setting, assume that, if you are older than the people around you, they expect you to initiate the conversation. This applies whether you have never met them or whether you already know them.  So it wouldn’t hurt to stop worrying about whether anyone is noticing you, and notice them by saying hello, smiling, or whatever comes to mind.

2.  People will also assume that, because you are older, you are wiser.  You know things they don’t know. This is, I suppose, true.  A practical application is that they think you already know things, already have friends, already made it through that problem or situation, and they won’t realize you may be just as lost as they are, just as in need of friendship as they are, just as in need of wisdom for the next life event as they are. They will most likely look up to you for what you have accomplished and assume that it was some special knowledge that got you there.

3.  Be OK with the fact that you will not be noticed for your accomplishments, your looks (because you probably don’t have those any more), your hipness (because you aren’t) or your cuteness.  And if like me you have been a big pea in a small pod most of your life, realize that will change.  All you’re experiencing is what other people live every day.  You don’t need other people to ask you how you are, what you think, or what is new in your life, as much as it may feel that you need that.  God will provide exactly what you need, and his attention and regard is yours, all the time.  You have the opportunity to really get to know the people around you, by initiating contact with them and listening to how they are doing and where they are in their lives.  You have something they don’t: experience.  Let them benefit from it.

Acceptance of your new role and position is a hard change, but it’s your best option.  I have wasted too much time analyzing what is different now, what am I doing to put people off, why are people here less friendly than everywhere else I have ever lived, and all of those questions have not really gotten me anywhere.  What I want is to go with what is, and be content.

I hope that for you forewarned will be forearmed.  Just go with it.  It will be different, but different is not necessarily bad.  (Yes, I know it’s scary, but repeat with me while I keep repeating to myself: different is not necessarily bad.)  Hard, yes.  Different, yes.  New, yes. Feels odd, yes.  All that is true.  But I am confident that there is a divine purpose to go along with the new reality.

And hey, being perceived as an expert is part of your new reality.  And I  like that.

Posted March 2, 2014 by swanatbagend in servanthood, transitions

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“There have been a few changes since you left” — written November 25   2 comments

This is what I may end up saying to Zach when he gets home on Wednesday.  When he left for college in August, while I felt that over three months was a long time to be apart, I didn’t think that anything here would really change.  I anticipated that he would be the one changing.

While I feel sure he has changed, taking in his 18th birthday, handling all daily responsibilities for life, health, classes and planning for international travel himself, since he’s been gone, I am surprised to note quite a few things here that have changed.

We’ve actually moved some furniture around, got a different tablecloth, built something for the cats to climb on.

The dry erase board in our school room, which was command central for Zach and Helena’s school assignments, is now command central for Helena and Beren’s assignments.

The garden of course is finished, and the 10 foot tall okra stocks have been chopped down.  The morning glories, which were in fine form when he left, have frozen, died and been removed from the trellis.

There’s construction on the way to church that has emptied out a lot and it looks really different.

Other things too…..I suspect that Greg and I look just a tiny bit older than we did when he left.

Helena and Beren are probably taller.

How they spend their time each day is pretty similar to when he left, but not entirely since Helena is doing new activities that take her away from home more, and Beren has branched out to take a few science classes, and he was pretty grown up in them I am happy to say.

You wouldn’t think that much would change in a little over three months, but I suspect it has.  Time never stands still, even when you think it is.

I know that although in many ways we are the same, and our relationship will be the same, I will find that there are some subtle differences.  After all we are not on the same daily life track.  He’s doing different things than I am every day, and as much as I’d like to be involved in that out of interest and love, it is not possible, nor should it be.

One thing I am sure of that I’ve learned in the last few years.

I will not take for granted any particular gathering of people, thinking, “Oh well, there’ll be another day like this one.”

I used to think that, not any more.

Posted December 8, 2013 by swanatbagend in Uncategorized

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