Thursday, October 13, 2016

Transitions

Transitions.  You've had them.  I've had them.  Life is all about transition. I know more transitions are to come - some good, and some not so good.

In my life, I started out as a little girl.  Then, I went to school, then college.  Marriage and jobs followed.  One day, I became pregnant and everything changed again.

Then, the nest emptied. Another transition.

Now, as I approach the magic age (in our society) of 65, another transition looms, and this is a big one.

Retirement (yes or no?) looms on the horizon, plus my body reminds me daily that I am becoming a young senior.

A young senior.  There is something weird about that expression.  But one thing is certain - time is slipping away.

I try not to leap out of my seat too quickly.  I ponder throw rugs - aren't they a bit more slippery than they used to be?  I worry about bathtubs in motels, which, magically, keep getting harder and harder to get out of.  I see my mother in law, who is in her late 80's, age by the day.

I do exercises to maintain my strength so I can balance. Balance. It's something I used to take for granted.  I see seniors I know struggle with their aging bodies and know that their transitions will be mine one day, too, even if I try to fight them off with exercise and diet.

And there is something else that has started recently - I seem to want to spend more time in my memories. 
I think about the the past autumns I have lived through. Maybe that's because autumn, itself, is a time of transition.
I remember when I was young and used to pick up colorful leaves to take to school.

I smell leaves as I scuff though them and the scent makes me think of other times.

One view of downtown Binghamton, New York, October 12
It's almost like all these times exist simultaneously in my mind. 

I also know that if I take this picture on November 12, those trees will be bare and the ground may very well be covered with snow.  And in a few months, the trees will be in bloom once again.

I've gone through the cycle of seasons so many times now.  Transition after transition after transition.


What transitions have you had to live through recently?

Day 13 of the #Ultimate Blog Challenge

19 comments:

  1. Yes, transitions. I'm 62 now and the transitions still come, but the perspective changes. In my mind, I'm still 35, but my body knows differently... and I have grandchildren. And I guess it is like the seasons changing. We are conceived, we are born, we blossom and thrive and then we pass...

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  2. I love looking in the rear view mirror. I do it, too, from time to time.
    Carol

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  3. Hmm. I refuse to be a "young senior" and :P to you for even mentioning it. Balance is an interesting concept these days - between a pretty well-healed broken ankle with some residual nerve damage and the frequent bouts of vertigo, I'm kind of learning to ignore the mixed signals in my ear and brain and just think of flying, dancing, balancing - apparently, I already rely a LOT on my visual balance systems (we have three: inner ear, vision, and muscular coordination). I'm trying to build and reteach the muscles to do their part, as the other two have occasionally, unexpectedly, faltered in doing theirs. But there's nothing majorly wrong with me, so I'm assuming this will get better with practice. And perhaps also be improved with weight loss. I shower, rather than bathe - have for decades. But recently have noticed that getting off the floor is a bit more challenging than it used to be. I don't think this is all "age," though - I think it's that I spend a lot less time on the floor to start with! :) I'm making a point of doing that now and then, just to maintain the ability. And I keep trying to do a real push-up (something I couldn't do as a kid, either, so that'll be a hell of an accomplishment in my 50s.)

    My grandmothers both lived to their mid-90s. I'm pretty sure that if I intend to do the same, I won't be retiring at 65, because I won't be able to afford to.

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  4. I always consider transitions a period of excitement, for they offer new "rings" upon which my fingers can latch.

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  5. It's such beautiful flowers. It reminds me how I freaked out before entering 30s but wasn't bad though I wished I was five years younger. There are few regrets and would have done things differently! I often wonder where I'll be at 50 something.

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  6. This is so timely! I have two teenagers, one of whom will be graduating this spring. My heart is breaking at the same time it's swelling with pride. I especially appreciated your analogy to autumn. That's just what it feels like, that something is dying but something new is about to grow. Lovely. Thanks!

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  7. Beautiful writing. Transitions are important though. I just moved to Amsterdam and I appreciate having seasons after 3 years living in Singapore, where the weather is pretty similar 365 days per year. And you know what happens in that case? you don't realize that time is passing, so you see yourself a little bit older year after year and you don't understand why, because you think it is still the very first day you arrived there...

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  8. My biggest transition in the past few years was moving from TX to CA with my husband. Big changes but big blessings too!

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  9. I love this line: It's almost like all these times exist simultaneously in my mind.

    I have that experience so often these days. It happens especially when I'm listening to music from "back then." I get so caught up in remembering and reliving those times in my head that I am a bit stunned when I look around and see it's really not 1975...the mirror tells me that quite clearly! I really related to this piece.

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  10. We are transitioning to the "all of our kids are adults" phase. It's weird. But I like it.

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  11. Brava! Well-said. Transitions are a part of all of our lives and too often they pass without a thought from us. You are right to note that in autumn - and in the autumn of our years - we become more sensitive to those transitions. We linger and reflect on them. That, too, is part of the transition of our lives.

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  12. Great article! I am 66 and recently retired from my profession. Retirement is a transition, as are many other changes and phases that I have seen in my life. I think you are smart to take the time for reflection as you so through transitions in life. I wrote a post about the week-long silent retreat that I enjoyed about a month after I retired. You might like reading it. http://homewithmimi.com/91-hours-silent-my-week-at-a-monastery/ Thanks for this post.

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  13. My sons have become young men. The oldest is a sophomore in college and the youngest a freshman in high school. One evening, I fixed my youngest plate for dinner and he became upset with me. I went to my room and cried. Later that evening, when my husband returned from work, he said, "Glenda, you have to stop babying him. Let him grow up."

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  14. In my biz, Royal Transitioning we help women move from job to the next phase of life. So many women get stuck here. They have guilt, shame, Fear and a myriad of health, emotional and spiritual issues. We are so used to doing for everyone else. This time is critical to get a handle on who WE want to become. We need to make decisions on how we see our identity .so can give ourselves permission to put our calling, mission or dream at the forefront.

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  15. Transitions in love relationships, in work relationships, in body acceptance, in friends and loved ones crossing over... So much to process, every day. But it is still glorious to be alive!

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  16. I'm in a transition period right now in my life. Left family and friends to live as a digital nomad for some time because the kids are grown and moved on and out. Posted today about loneliness on the road, but I'm thinking this transition doesn't have to be sad. Even though it is a little!

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  17. Interesting . . . I remarked that every 21 years, my life went through a major transition: age 21--I became a mom for the first time. In the 21st year of my marriage, I became divorced. After 21 years of teaching school, I retired. I don't know what 21 means, but it obviously had an impact on my life. Thanks for sharing. I'm getting ready to go through another "not so drastic" transition--age 65.

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  18. Ah yes, the transition of the seasons. Which we don't have much of around where I am, but it is getting cooler (finally!). At the moment, the only transition I'm thinking about is the one from having a stupid cold to not. Ah, for the not...

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  19. I tend to think of the start of the school year each year as a time of transition. I love the photos on your post!

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