How Much Change Is TOO Much?

August was a month of changes for our household. All were unexpected. They include:

  • Our youngest son dropping out of college, getting a new job and moving out
  • New jobs for three family members
  • New hours and schedules
  • An unexpected medical diagnosis requiring surgery post haste
  • Medical bills not covered by insurance
  • My husband’s company, where he’s worked for 16 years, announced it’s closing its doors in December.

By the time August wound down it kinda felt like, Now what?

It’s not that I dislike change per se. I mean, hey. I enjoy a surprise! party or event as much as the next person. As long as I know about it in advance. And yeah, a little shake up can be just what’s needed to jump-start a body out of a rut or a boring routine. Change can add a little perspective and some zippity-doo-dah, zippity-ay.

But when major “unexpecteds” blindside you all once, one on top of another, it’s a bit disorienting.

You’re trying to adjust to one change– mentally, emotionally, physically, geographically, relationally – when a herd of others comes charging down the pike like Secretariat rounding the final turn at the Belmont Stakes.

The great Secretariat, Horse of the Century.

My motto is usually A place for everything, and everything in its place. I’m big on organizing. Planning ahead. In triplicate. I mean, I have contingency plans for the contingency plan. Appointments and meetings calendared months in advance. I do not do last minute. Or chaos. No, I don’t always want to know where I’m going. Just usually.

So taking on a new challenge, goal or change can be invigorating when it’s something you’ve chosen and/or anticipate. You can work up to it. Prepare accordingly. But when a big change is suddenly dropped on you out of the blue, without your input or consent, that’s a different story.

How do you cope? What do you do next? Which end is up? How much change is too much? Has my Hershey’s stash run out?

That’s when you find out what’s rock solid and what’s silly putty. What’s a firm foundation and what’s sinking sand.

Did I mention chocolate?


Image credit – Secretariat


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