The thing about change

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Change is a tricky business.  Sometimes it sneaks up on you.  Or me.  Sometimes it sneaks up on me.

This Fall, as the leaves began to change color, I briefly and very simply explained a bit about the seasons to Emmitt.  I would point out the new colors of the leaves on the trees: red (his favorite!), yellow, and orange.  He didn't respond much when I first started talking to him about it.  I thought either he didn't quite understand or didn't care.  But then he began pointing out the trees to me: "Oh look, another one, red one!"  Now we love to point out the beautiful trees to each other as we drive around town.  I even find myself doing it when he's at MDO and it's just me and Cora in the car.  She's less interested in it.  (E is absorbing so much these days; it's a fun stage!)  It occurred to me one day some weeks ago that the changing environment around us has been a perfect backdrop for our little family's life this Fall.

Let me explain...

I expected life with two kids to be harder.  What I mean is that I think I envisioned it as overtly harder... like I'd be flustered a lot, or would feel as though I didn't have enough hands because two precious ones would both need something at the same time and I'd be inadequate at handling this calmly and gracefully.  This kind of thing certainly happens and can be frustrating and overwhelming, but often it brings me an odd sense of joy and makes me feel lucky to have my hands full (literally) with my kiddos.

We spent the Summer adjusting to our life as a family of four and I thought it was a surprisingly smooth transition.  There were some difficult moments, days, and weeks, but overall it felt like normal change and as to be expected with a new baby.  Cora made things seem pretty easy because she was such a sweet thing, a relaxed and content newborn, cuddly, lots of personality early on.  I was so crazy about that girl from the get-go, and I found that she helped distract from the changes going on around us.  Let me be clear that I did have some baby blues and other struggles, but found myself pleasantly surprised with how things were going overall throughout the Summer.  I've mentioned a time or two that change, even really fabulous change, can take a little getting used to for me.  But as Summer ended and we moved into Fall, I guess my silly mind sort of thought "Okay, easy peasy, we've got a good little rhythm going here.  Adjustment done."  

Oh Grace, you stupid, stupid girl.

I've struggled this Fall and have had a hard time pinpointing why.  And while there is more to it, I've decided that mostly I've struggled because here we are changing again, or changing still.  Adjusting still.  This new/same change snuck up on me, because I felt like we had a pretty good flow going with the kids... nothing felt dramatically up or down.  But the truth is we're still very much adjusting to our new life, and even though it's wonderful and we wouldn't have it any other way, it is surely going to take more time than a few blissful Summer months to really figure this all out.  I'm thankful for the in between moments while we continue to sort through how life works and looks these days.  I couldn't have a better (or cuter) crew to do all this learning and growing and adjusting with.  And simply acknowledging that we're still caught up in this change has helped me a great deal.

Now, would you take a look at that tree?  And those two littles.  Oh my, those two.

About three or four weeks ago, we were checking out this tree after church.  The colors of the leaves were exquisite.  The next day, almost all of the leaves fell off.  


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