When Rapid Change Blurs to Standing Still

Zap! Not biting bugs but minutes then hours evaporating. To where? What happened to Spring? And Summer? A glance at blank yet expired calendar pages leaves me ravenous. It’s as though I’m stuck in February before covid-19 hijacked 2020 into becoming the “Year that Wasn’t.”

Plain brown cardboard box

With months of rescheduling, cancellations, and extended lock downs, I feel boxed in…like my world is reduced to a tiny closet in a tiny house with no room to turn and twirl around in fun. Do you feel this paralyzing standstill, like your life is frozen in time?

“Things change. And friends leave. Life doesn’t stop for anybody.”
Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

Losing 16 loved ones over the last 18 months, I understand that sentiment. Deeply. My heavy heart wasn’t prepared for a continued incogitable rampant purging when I optimistically welcomed 2020. I thought I already experienced enough loss to last a lifetime or at least the next several years.

“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change” wrote Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley in “Frankenstein.” I’ve lived that sentiment most of my life as it’s been my usual reaction to change. And now, as America falters under polarity and anarchy, I try to steady myself in this devastating earthquake that is crumbling much of the world I’ve known.

Clinging to the Past Brings Unhappiness

Dr. Elaine Aron, a respected researcher and author of six books on highly sensitive persons (HSP) advises: “…Everything around us is impermanent and so are we. If you cling to now, or to the pre-covid past, you are going to be unhappy….Clinging to your best moods, happy self, or wise ego will not work. No matter how much you try to train yourself, you will not be at your best every day.

“That does not mean you should not do all you can to stay peaceful—meditate, spend time with nature, avoid over-stimulation, stay rested, get the social contact and support you need, but above all, remember that no feeling lasts forever. So be patient and kind to yourself when you can’t regulate your feelings…Buddha, Christ, Lao Tzu, Rumi, and many others said that the solution to the changing nature of everything is to open to the unchanging…(usually spiritual in nature).”

Changing the Response to Change
Person making the peace sign while wearing a carboard box with a crayon drawing of a face

I integrate Dr. Aron’s approach but there are still times I feel breathlessly outrun by 2020’s rapid fire. The only healthy response is to continue working on changing my response to change. “This too shall pass,” “it’s always dark before the dawn,” “the gift is as great as the pain,” are steam engines that pulled me through challenging times before. Now I’m also focusing on Lao Tzu‘s insights from the Tao Te Ching for handling change:

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.”

Pondering snippets from varied sources also helps ease the bizarre energy of these seemingly endless days where capriciousness and stagnation occur concurrently:

“Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. Today I am wise, so I am changing myself.”∼Rumi

“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.”
Leo Tolstoy

“The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.”Albert Einstein

“Do not dwell in the past, do not dream of the future, concentrate the mind on the present moment.” ∼ Buddha

“Everything that happens in this world happens at the time God chooses.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 in the Good News Translation Bible

On the brighter side, perhaps I won’t feel a year older when, or should I say if, 2021 shows up…

Two feet wearing white socks sticking out of a box decorated with color crayon
Photo by cottonbro from Pexels

Other photos credits while still working out bugs in the new Gutenberg editor:
– Featured photo by Alex Powell from Pexels
– Plain cardboard box by Brandable Box on Unsplash
– Cardboard person by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

8 Replies to “When Rapid Change Blurs to Standing Still”

  1. No worries, Sue. My posts are on Sundays. I completely understand your need for self care — truly critical and especially during times like these. So, no need for apologies and certainly you were not selfish.💖 Yes, we do have a choice, at least for today. So while the herd continues to graze…I’ve never been one to stand silently by signaling agreement when it’s not my truth. It’s a strike against my honor that I cannot bear.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Well, thank you so much, MisaeMich! I hadn’t quite considered a specific yet unequal ratio of 10/90% but understand what you are saying. We are all helping each other the best we can. ❤️ GOD bless you too, and thank you for your thoughtful sentiments! ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Writegardener,

    This is a well written post. In response to your comment in my post Change – indeed I love this post! As for weekends got more time to read blogs tho. 😉

    But here, thanks GOD today were back to normal already – only then that mask on 😷 when not at home.

    Sorry to hear for your lost. Sending prayers & hugs to you dear. Don’t worry, it’s okay to not be okay. Feel your emotions & then let it go. 💕

    Indeed, still we can choose to be peaceful & be open to our love ones & friends. True, all bad things will pass. Life is like a wheel sometimes we’re up & sometimes we’re down. And so as “Life is 10% what happens to me & 90% of how I react to it.” – Charles Swindoll. Well, this post is scheduled already soon in my blog post. Hehe 😁

    I love all the quotes you have shared. Thank you for sharing. ❤️ GOD bless!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Dear WG.. Indeed Where did the last eight months go… It’s speed has to be seen to be believed.. and its not just the old ones whose lives are speeding up .. Several younger members of my family are also noticing time speeding..
    So sorry to learn of your recent bereavements WG.. I send you my comforting thoughts.. This is a year many of us will wish to mark off the calendar..
    But it will also be a year well remembered in our Human History of that too I am certain…
    How have you been.. I do not see a date when you posted this.. Apologies for not calling in, I have been more than a little selfish lately. I cut notifications of new blog posts of those I follow to my email.. And I have not been in my reader often.. Rumi and Leo Tolstoy were wise…
    The only thing we can change is ourselves.. But sadly we expect everyone else to. And then bemoan the fact nothing will change.. 🙂 Because no one is willing to stand up and be counted as different… So the herd continues to graze… Oblivious of the slaughter house around the bend..
    Sorry if that sounds melodramatic… It’s just that I have been trying to point out certain things to certain people within my own circle of family and friends, and they would sooner bury their heads.. So be it.. We can only change ourselves.. its their choice..

    Sending love and well wishes WG….. Hope all is well with you my friend 💖🙏😘

    Liked by 2 people

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