I feel the Winds of Change slowly turning yet another page in my book of life – gently but surely blowing new circumstances in my path that will forever change my world as I know it. I used to believe that we lived our lives as one continuous story, but I now know that our stories are broken into very distinct chapters. Each chapter has its own theme, lessons, characters, and subplots. I cannot hold on to the past once a page has turned, no matter how much I want to. And I can not skip a chapter and move forward until I have experienced and learned from the chapter at hand. I must live fully in the present moment, making a conscious decision to be joyful and grateful for whatever circumstances I find myself in.
That has not been an easy lesson for this Type A personality that is used to trying to “fix” things and people. I have often been so busy trying to control the situation that I lost the intended blessings of the day.
I thought that I had finally reached my goal of living out my days by the ocean
when I left Virginia and moved to Surfside Beach many years ago. My heart
was broken by the back to back losses of my dad, a dear girlfriend, and my
failing eyesight. No longer driven by the strong desire to “succeed” in the business world, I downsized, slowed my crazy pace and truly enjoyed my 11 years spending time with my mom and treasured new friends in South Carolina. My chapter by the sea was one of great healing and spiritual growth.
In the Fall of 2009, my daughter blessed me with my first grandchild and asked
me to return to Virginia to help her as she raised a child while still pursuing both
her management career and her Master’s degree. I eagerly turned the page
with great excitement about being a grandmother. I exchanged my ocean for a river and found great joy spending time with my grandbabies, children, and
dear Virginia friends. Lila is now 2 ½ years old and Sammi is 11 months old,
and they are “my joy” in life. I am content in this chapter and thought it would
last much longer. But God laughs when we make our plans, because only HE
knows what the future holds.
In February, my 80 year old mom was hospitalized with a heart in afib. I spent the entire month of March with her as she regained
her strength and adjusted to the new medicines. Unfortunately, her heart
continues to race erratically despite the ICU procedure that temporarily shockedit back into rhythm at the hospital. My mom is now asking (almost begging) me to move back to Surfside and live with her. This is an unexpected turn of events as my mom has always loved living independently. My heart is torn as I try to decide what to do. I will never get back these precious moments with my young granddaughters, nor the treasured moments with my aging mother. Both my daughter and my mom need me right now.
For now, my temporary solution is to once again downsize my living space and spend 3 weeks in Virginia and try to return to Mom in Surfside every fourth or fifth week. I am in limbo once again, asking God to go before me and show me His will for my life in this next chapter. I feel the need to get out my books on co-dependent love – Boundaries by John Townsend and Co-Dependent No More by Melody Beattie. I need to figure out how to live MY life on purpose while meeting the needs of those I love. I know this article is very personal in nature, but I can’t help but believe that some of my readers are facing a similar situation…feeling the demands of two generations of loved ones pulling you in two different directions.
As the page turns, let’s remember to stay positive, grateful, and in touch with our own life purpose. Life truly is an amazing gift, and I can’t wait to see what this chapter holds for us