Covid-19 · Fostering · Parenting · Uncategorized

Holding on to the Past

Have you ever found yourself clinging desperately to what you have right now… unwilling to move forward.

I often feel this way in the fall. I am hanging on desperately to the the memories of summer, the warmth of the sun, the long days of sunlight. I will wear my sandals and capris until I have to walk through snow. I am hanging on as long as possible.

There are others who break out their sweaters at the first sign of a leaf changing. They embrace the fall and look ahead to Christmas. I think they may be on to something. If we embrace change and willingly move towards new things we make room in our lives for joy.

We have changed a few things in our home lately. The toaster mentioned in the previous blog for one. We also sold a vehicle and purchased a new one. This all seemed fairly minor to us because we have changed things often and it is always for the better in the long run!

One of our foster kids felt very different about these changes! The new toaster was a major issue. “Why is it red?”, “I don’t want a new one, I liked the old one!”, “I’m not eating toast if I have to use that one!”. It seemed so very odd to us, especially since I bought the exact same brand and model of toaster so it would be a smooth transition, other than the colour. It was exactly the same to use and shouldn’t have caused any stress. But it did!

Change has not been good in their world. Every change they experienced before coming here went from bad to worse. This 2 1/2 years of stability has been the best space in their lives. They want it to stay the same! They don’t realize that change can move us forward into better things! They are using the toaster happily already. Sometimes you need to move ahead even if you don’t want to. Parenting can feel like an endless journey of pushing kids forward into the new and helping them cope with the changes! Being a foster parent just adds complexities to the journey!

The announcement that we were selling vehicles was also met with horror. When they realized it wasn’t optional they started their list of changes they wouldn’t tolerate! “No white vans… I don’t like white vans.”, “I don’t want a black van either, black vans are bad.”, “What if it smells funny…”. Their pronouncements to guard against an uncertain future went on.

When we purchased our new van, grey, by the way, there was hesitant exploration, followed by grudging accommodation and then hopeful acceptance. The change was good!

The idea that changes move us forward into better things is new. We are writing a new narrative in their lives. We don’t need to hang on with ferocity to everything in our lives that is good in the fear that nothing better can lie ahead. We need to keep walking into our future anticipating that the good will continue!

I need this reminder in the small things. Fall has been glorious and longer than anticipated! I am still able to be outside in my sandals, but the snow will come! And when it does I need to let go of fall and move into winter anticipating the good things that lie ahead! We do ourselves no favors when we dread the inevitable! Covid-19 has all of us dreading the next lockdown or rise in restrictions but this too shall pass! There are good things ahead!

So here’s to the changes that lie ahead, be they seasonal or other! Let’s look for the blessings in the new!

In the midst of the mess,

Marny

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