Talking to a friend recently whose life is being upended, I mentioned how nice it was that at least her career was settled. With everything else in flux, she has a stable port in which to rest.
“I never seem to be offered that,” I commented. When change happens in my life, it tends to come as a full-fledged tsunami. On several occasions in my life, the entire house of cards has been thrown up in the air. And when those cards land, they settle in a completely different configuration I must then call my life.
Oddly enough, I must admit that these occasions involve my own choice for change. I don’t mean I purposely burn the house down to begin anew. But life morphs in such a way that I am forced to make a choice for either the safe and the known, or the unknown. The unknown usually wins, because the known has become untenable.
Did I mention I can be quite a ninny? There’s that, yes. I love the known. I hug the known. I tell the known I love it every single day. Change is terrifying and exhilarating simultaneously. But most times, I’m leaning toward “terrifying.”
When I am ninnying about, trying not to let the flurry of flying cards smack me in the face, I generally complain to God. I’m sure He loves that. “Really, God? Again with this? Why must I make the ‘right’ choice, the tough choice, without seeing if a safety net is in place to catch me as I make the leap?”
And generally, the answer I get is that it’s about that pesky thing called faith. It’s not faith if you see the safety net. Safety is comforting but it rarely promotes growth, spiritual or otherwise.
Before I divorced, my sister asked me if I was sure it was what I wanted. I told her that if I did not feel I deserved better, who would?
When I had to decide to either return to the corporate world or start my own business in earnest, I sat in a lavish conference room overlooking Lake Michigan. Before me was a list of names on an org chart—the team I would take on if I chose to accept the position for which I was interviewing.
I had sat in many such conference rooms prior. The gorgeous view never made up for the plethora of egos that usually filled the room. And a voice inside of me said, “This is the known. I no longer enjoy these known bits.” The pro forma choice for me was to take the job for security. That was the “smart” choice. But not the wise one.
Which led me to the bottom line–if I didn’t feel I deserved better, who would?
During both of these life changes, I was terrified, truth be told. But my gut would not allow me to ignore that a new direction was necessary.
A fellow blogger recently commented that numerology deemed 2016 a year of completion, but 2017 a year of beginnings. Do you feel it? Are you ready?
As I watch my friend try to wend her way through the minefield of change she has entered, a declaration from a book I’m reading comes to mind:
“I stand on a precipice of great change. I stand on the edge of truth. I stand on the edge of freedom. I stand on the edge of all that I have known and believed to be true. I stand on the edge of my limitations. I stand on the edge of my fear. And as I say yes, as I say yes, as I say yes, I step forward into the unknown.
I say yes to the journey before me and I step into the unknown.”
–The Book of Knowing and Worth, Paul Selig
I choose my life. I claim my worth. Say it with me, folks. I think the metaphorical equivalent is shuffling the deck. A house of cards is not meant to be permanent. After all, any ‘ole stray wind can blow it down.
But a life purposefully chosen, a resounding and faith-filled “yes” to the Universe as you fling both arms out and jump from the virtual precipice? I have found these things to be rock solid in the most delightful (if sometimes terrifying) way.
As we say yes, as we say yes, as we say yes, let us step forward into the unknown. This is the part where we fling our arms and jump.