There is this funny thing about changes. No matter how much one might want a particular change, when it comes, it always brings a down side with it. That’s because change also means loss and adjustments. And although that knowledge is simple and reasonable, most of us don’t want to readily embrace its reality.
My Mother is in her new apartment. I knew that would mean a great many changes in my own routine and schedule. There are still lots of adjustments to be made as the unpacking continues, and new places must be found for old and familiar things. Yet, in only three days time, that empty apartment already is starting to feel familiar and cozy, as though she has been there for months instead of a few days.
That aside, however, I am aware that there are far more changes to come in the coming days and weeks. And many of those will impact directly on me and the way I live and order my own existence. I love the idea of being able to walk across the parking lot and visit with my Mom for a while, then come back home to my own space. I have done that each day so far. But doing it, has meant adjusting my own routine and how I spend my time right here where I live.
Am beginning to realize that that one small, but wonderful change, means even more changes. I love the fact that I have a bolt hole, an escape that can be accomplished with simple ease. I no longer have to make preparations two days ahead of time in order to visit with her. Nor do I any longer have to wait on someone else, the weather, or time, to do so. I can simply go and come back at my own choosing, or if she calls and needs something. Those are very real blessings and I am deeply grateful for them.
That also means I have a great deal more freedom in creating my own schedule. It is far easier to maintain whatever I feel I need to maintain in the process. But, as I said at the beginning, there are and can be some very real downsides to all of this. For example, before I had no vehicle, therefore was not an immediate source of care-giving responsibilities. That has changed drastically. Now, I have become a primary source because of that same convenience I just spoke about. And although I welcome that aspect of this particular change, I am also aware that it could swiftly turn into something else, something that might become a burden, or a source of resentment and more.
All these little (and not so little) adjustments make this present time period a bit of a bumpy road. Picking my way carefully is just another adjustment to be made. Sooner or later, things will once again calm down, settle in and become smooth, or at least a more familiar routine. In a way, I expect the best and the worse, and actually hope for something that falls in between those two points. Some will, while others won’t.
It’s all a bit exciting and tiring for everyone. Mom must sit and watch while we do the active work. That is extremely hard for her to do. She does, however, take her supervisory position very seriously, often adding a bit of teasing and laughter along with her instructions and wishes as to where and how things should go. And of course, after we all clear out, she walks through all her new rooms and moves small things around to give herself a feeling of accomplishment and participation.
Although I am aware of all the adjustments that might be needed in my own personal sphere, I am also aware that each of us connected with her have adjustments that must be taken into consideration. That’s an awful lot of juggling. But again, we will work it all through with time and a bit of patience. Maybe, for some, more than just a bit.
I am currently hearing that old Hank Williams Jr. song about An Attitude Adjustment. In the song, an adjustment seems to mean a hell of a good beating. The song is funny and always made me laugh. And its a very good reminder of where I don’t want to go with all these new and different changes. Making room for differences, allowing others to adjust as they need, and deep breathing for patience are just a few things needed in these present circumstances.
How we actually accommodate change is an interesting issue to explore and consider. Mainly because if we become aware of our own foibles in this arena, we may also be able to have the willingness to consider what others may be dealing with as well. I would hope that as this change ripples out and through our everyday lives, we can accomplish whatever needs to be done without beating the hell out of one another or ourselves.
That said, I think it might be possible that I will be humming that Hank Williams Jr. ditty for the next several weeks, maybe longer. Wish me luck.