Thursday, September 16, 2010

The Transitional Zones. Turning Fifty-licious

"All endings are beginnings.
We just don't know it at the time......"
Mitch Ablom, Five People You Meet in Heaven.

If you were to examine the connection between an ending and a beginning, you'd probably see spaces between the loose threads that bind them.  Or maybe even a gap.  Yes, maybe there's a kind of a transitional zone where the synapses don't touch. This is where I am sometimes, like everyone else on this planet.  No matter who you are, there is a bit of flux happening in your life.  Change is inevitable.  We are not static beings.  As soon as we learn something new, we are in the process of an ending and a beginning.   This past week it has been a theme of sorts as  I've spoken to many as they find their "new beginning" footing as they start taking new courses at the College.  

The thing about endings and beginnings is that you don't just have ONE of them. Our lives are a complicated somewhat messy multi-faceted set of them.  Linearity is not a human condition that is natural.  We are jugglers of many endings and beginnings.  Think about all of them that confront you on a daily basis.  How easier it would be if we were only coping with ONE ending and ONE beginning.  Crazy easy!  But, not reality.  Not only that, our lives consist of coping with them at different stages of openings and closings...... 

It reminds me of the passage in the Bible (and a well known 60's song), for everything, there is a season........ 

Seasons on the calendar may follow one another in an orderly manner.  Seasons in our lives crossover, combine, and create a mishmash cornucopia unique to every individual.  You may be in the spring of a relationship, or the autumn of one.  You may be basking in the summer of your career, or standing on the precipice of retirement...... winter......... with snow covered seeds waiting to germinate a new lifestyle.   We may have all four seasons happening all the same time with respect to different parts of our lives.  And when I consider it that way, I can see how often I find myself in the zone of transition.... not for everything at the same time.  I think I would fall apart if that was the case.  But, living the circle of life juggling the stages and the seasons while the days unfold as they always will........ 

Moving forward,
Staying still,
Letting Go
Keenly motivated
Opening and closing.........
ALL DOINGS with feelings........ 

Winter Endings blending into Spring beginnings are occuring all around us and in us.  Sometimes with ease.  Sometimes with unbalanced footing.  Whether we want them to or not.  We visit the zone between and ending and a beginning because we need to.  This is where we process the loss.  Every change, every time we let go of old stuff/knowledge/ways of doing or being/relationships/  we experience loss.  This is what is so difficult about change.  Not the change.  The loss.   There is a season for everything.   And a purpose too....... Loss is a part of life.  Loss is a part of living life.  Loss is the hurting part of resolution.

I turned 50 on Saturday.  I would be remiss if I didn't admit that it is a milestone I can't quite believe I've hit already.   I don't think my parents can either!  They don't look old enough to have a 50 year old daughter!!  :)  But, here I am!  50 for God's sakes.  A third of the way through my life!  :)   It wasn't going to be a big deal, or didn't seem like it was going to be when I thought about it.  

But, then life threw a major curveball and it became symbolically challenging.  It quickly turned into a huge hill to climb up and over.  You see, it was the first birthday in 25 years that I wouldn't be celebrating it with my husband.  He has been by my side for half of all of my birthdays.  And now, it's no more.  This is what I couldn't process.  This is the loss I was holding onto.   

To everything, there is a season and a time and purpose under Heaven..... so often it remains a mystery.  And that's alright.  We don't need all the answers.  We just want them! 

Something magical happened last Saturday.  I let go of the loss.  I put my party dress on, complete with a new pair of sparkly silver sneakers I had been saving for just this occasion!   There was a transference from an ending to a big yellow door opening onto a new beginning.  I stipstepped in my silver shoes across the threshold, beyond the gap, over the transitional zone and landed with both feet on new ground.  It could not have happened without the undying support of my friends and family.  Turning 50 all of a sudden became turning 50-licious! 

A birthday party took place in my home........the one I had envisioned!  My house filled with joy and laughter, with song and music, with wine and food and with a cake especially created by my 12 year old friend Maeve!  Everywhere I turned, I saw people of all ages interacting and having fun, including my parents who arrived to surprise me!  All the way from Ontario via Maine!  

Right at the appointed time, God seemed to push away the rainy clouds to let the sun take his twilight bow over the river horizon. AS the day turned into night, the stars lit up the sky with so many points of glimmerlights it was impossible to comprehend.  And before you knew it, the campfire was blazing the in backyard and a circle of friends gathered for warmth, song and stories.  Inside the house, the chatter and music continued to........   people flowed from to and fro.  And life for me took a giant step forward, lighter from letting go of some of the loss.  

I will treasure this milestone in my life.  It was the biggest, brightest, most brilliant gift I could ever have received.  The gift of love, friendship, and belonging to a group of people and to a place I call home.   Thank you.  Thank you.

Endings are really new beginnings?  To everything there is a season......... this one truly has a purpose and a few reasons.    I'll toast to that!


kenju said...

You make 50 look great!!

Twain12 said...

Happy Birthday and here is to new beginnings ♥

TheMuddledMarketPlace said...

i hope your birthday blessings ooze over throughout the week ahead!

and thank you for a very helpful post

The House on Big Island said...

"Stand up...Stand up....Stand up dear Muskie, stand up!!!

Skip around the dining room, skip around the dining room, skip around the dining room - skip, skip, skip!"

Happy half a century and welcome to the club!!!


Selma said...

You are completely fifty-licious. I wouldn't have expected anything less. You are a wonderful person who is always in my heart. I wish you much happiness in the coming year XX

awareness said...

Judy! Thank you. I feel great! :) I'm in a much better place physically and emotionally than I was last spring. That was my goal. The goal continues.......with more smiles.

Twain...New beginnings are welcome here now. :)

MMP...They have oozed! I can't believe what a lucky girl I am. take care. xx

Daisy! And what a club it is! LOVE this club! A friend's son sang David Miles song to me! We all sang along........."I'm getting old, but I'm not old yet......" It was terrific!

Selma...thank you so much... You are in my heart always too. I love how blogging has brought us together in a spritual muse way. You're beautiful and I hope one day we meet in person. On a book tour maybe? That would be fun. I'll bring the wine.

Mavis said...

If wrinkles must be written upon our brows, let them not be written upon the heart. The spirit should never grow old."
-James A. Garfield

Happy Birthday my friend

Mavis said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Truly a beautiful woman - Happy Birthday!

Laura Schmitt said...

at 51, i wonder why it took so long to get to 50 - it is the sweet abandon decade, the decade of the exhale, of a deep breath, of the sigh of satisfaction, sweet's your chance to try something new, to try what you always wanted to do but youth held you's all about you's namaste

Marja said...

Dana a belated happy birthday. 50 a big milestone indeed I stil have to go a year. You look fantastic and I am happy you had a great day I hope you have a fifty licious year ahead

awareness said...

Mavis....wonderful quote. My spirit seems wrinkle free. And if a few show, I've got my lucky iron to steam them away.

Anon....why thank you whoever you are. :)

Wasabun... thank you....I will take your words to heart as I venture forward every day trying something new! Bring it on!

Marja....thank you! I'll keep you posted to let you know what its like!

JP/deborah said...

that sounds like a great party!! endings are new beginnings (how well I know that) ... and, congratulations to you for embracing this transition :)


Carmi said...

I've learned to never underestimate the power of community, and it's always been clear you've always been surrounded by an incredibly strong and diverse one.

Of course, that doesn't happen by accident. It takes special people to cultivate communities, to nurture their growth and preside over them as they stretch to - and beyond - the horizon. You cultivate better than virtually anyone I know, so it's no surprise you were surrounded by so much goodness. For it was you who made it all happen in the first place.

May all your milestones be so blessed. May we all be so lucky to continue sharing in them.

Jen said...

Carmi said it so well.

You are beautiful inside and out.

Thank you for being one of those women who is brave enough to put yourself out there, giving the rest of us hope to keep going.

I'm so very THANKFUL that our paths have crossed. xoxox

awareness said...

Deb...thank you. I sure didn't do it alone let me tell ya! Thank God for family and friends, and a special wink to my female friends. They rock.

Carmi. Wow, thank you. I try to live by my belief that what you put out there you receive in numerous ways... many of which you could never predict. Not that one should expect it. It's just that its seems as though this is how life works. I am blessed. This is the biggest lesson I've learned from the loss of my marriage. Who would've predicted that? Not I!

Jen... Thank you! You do the same! Your posts always make me think and feel. I love your irreverence because I can relate to it. :) Wouldn't it cool to organize a blogger gathering? We pick a date and a place and invite the friends we have me through this venue?