Transition: The time between asking for what we want and getting what we want.
The last stage of childbirth, and the hardest, most painful stage, is called the transition stage. During this stage, the pain becomes unbearable and most women begin to say they don’t want to go through this any more. They want out; out of the pain and out of the experience. They’ve stopped thinking about the end result, their beautiful baby, because they just want OUT!! This is also the shortest stage of labor, thank goodness. Then, suddenly it’s over and a beautiful new life has arrived. Suddenly, we forget the pain and focus on the baby, the new life that we’ve asked for and have now created. And, even just as suddenly, we would do it all over again if it was going to produce such a sweet and beautiful gift. Our human design has a built in reset button. All it takes is something beautiful showing up to make us willing to go through whatever it takes to create that beauty, again, and again, and again. I love that about us. It’s a clever design.
A lot of people I know right now are going through the birthing of a new life, from moving to a new home, to ending a long term relationship, or looking desperately for a new, more loving relationship, or healing some nagging health challenge. And, although their transitions appear very different, one thing remains the same for each one of them; they are all reacting, in varying degrees, the same way women react in the transition stage of labor. They want OUT! They are tired of the process. They don’t want to do this any more. They just want the pain to stop. And, I quietly smile and know that they are about to give birth. (I quietly smile because too much smiling while my friends are in pain could cause ME to experience some pain.)
Since I am not going through a big transition right now, and believe me I’ve had more than my share of them, I am being a stabilizing force for many of my friends who are feeling these earthquakes in their lives. Sometimes I need to just sit and listen, other times I give advice….when asked, and other times a nice dinner or a warm cookie helps. (And, when does a warm cookie not help?!) Transitions, even though we’ve asked for these changes, scare us. And, when we get scared we react by wanting to cling to what is familiar and resist the very thing we said we wanted. The very thing that instigated this transition.
Some good friends of ours, a couple who have been our neighbors for a long time, have been wanting a bigger house and a more expansive space to create in. They both work from home, so this is essential for them. They put their order out to the Universe a few years ago. Even if it wasn’t a formal order, it was being spoken quietly in their hearts every time they bumped into each other in their small hallway. They were living in a beautiful home that they had worked very hard to remodel. It truly was a piece of art and you could see the love in each room from hours and hours of personalizing each wall, floor, and fixture. But, it was small and getting smaller each year for them. Last year they began to talk about expanding their world by creating new ways of making a living and allowing more abundance to flow their way. In order to expand their world, they would have to be willing to expand in every way possible. At the same time that they began to think this way, they also began to renegotiate their house loan. It was a year of battling the bank and trying to make things right with their loan. But, in the end, the bank, after doing some unsavory things, took their house. They were stunned, they were angry, they were very sad, and they had been freed from the small lovely house that could no longer house their big spirits.
I helped them move their things to a house just up the street. It was a temporary home to stay in. They would only be there long enough to catch their breath and reorganize their thoughts. There were lots of tears, of course. The home they were leaving had their creativity all over its walls, floors, and yard. A newer, bigger home to rent was very hard to find. It literally took months to locate their next home. During this time of waiting for the next home to appear, there were times of anxiety, then some healing, less tears, and then more anxiety and more tears as the day grew nearer for them to find a place and leave the temporary home. The wondering of where their next home would be and how it would look was taking its toll. This stress caused more tears and more fear. At the eleventh hour, and I do literally mean the eleventh hour, they found a perfect new home for themselves. It’s big with incredible views of the red rocks to inspire their creativity, and it’s very near some other friends of ours in a very quiet and nice neighborhood. The big space they had begun to need and want a year or two ago has finally appeared and they are so happy to be expanding into this big space. So, although it looked like a mess at times, and there were lots of tears and lots of letting go of the old way of living, the bigger more creative place that could hold their now expanding lives, did show up.
Most of the time life looks like a mess when it’s in transition. Remember what it’s like when you clean out your closet? You pull everything out and your bedroom is a mess! Then, you start the slow and sometimes agonizing process of deciding what you want to keep and what you’ve outgrown or gotten tired of. Life is no different. We clean it out from time to time and I don’t think I’ve ever seen a cleanout that wasn’t messy. Some messes bigger and more dramatic than others, but still messes. So, life is simply responding to our new request and getting rid of what we don’t want any longer in order to give us what we do want, therefore it has to do the messy cleanout.
When we’ve outgrown a relationship and decide it’s time to seek love in a more loving way, it’s messy. It’s painful to end what was once full of our hopes and desires. And, although there is a part of us that is excited about creating something that can be full of hope and desire again, we still feel the emptiness for a while. We feel the ache of wanting love and feeling we no longer have it. We feel the loneliness and then begin to wonder if we will ever be loved again. This has been such a big theme in my life, and for many of my women friends. The transition of asking for what we really want in a loving relationship and then going through the steps to create it trip us up more than anything else I know because it is not tangible. It’s not a house we can go buy or rent. It’s not a career we can create. It involves the emotions of another person; someone we can’t control….even though at times, in our desperation, we want to.
During the time of wanting this love and waiting for this love to show up, there are a lot of tears and fears that flow. I’ve cried those tears and I’ve had those fears and now I’m watching a few of my women friends do the same. But, what I now know about this transition from single to being in partnership, is that learning to love yourself is key. Self love creates your next relationship. Most people don’t want to spend the time to discover their own beauty first. They want someone else to come along and show them how beautiful they are. A love filled relationship that will last for the long haul requires self love from both participants. But, because most of us have been alone for a while and our hearts ache to feel supported, we become anxious, fearful, and our hope begins to dwindle. During this time of transitioning from not knowing our own loving selves to falling in love with our beautiful selves and therefore creating that reflection in someone else there are a lot of tears and fears.
If we could learn to recognize these times of transition as a messy but productive time, then maybe we could all calm down a little bit and handle this time more gracefully. I am learning this right now as I watch my friend’s lives quake with change. I’ve now lived long enough and had enough quakes of my own to know that each quake brings something new into my life and it’s always bigger and better than what I had before. Can we allow ourselves to be more patient during times of transition or is it part of the experience to shudder, whine, and doubt everything that seems messy to us?
Transitions are beautiful because they bring us the new life we’ve asked for. I hope the next time my world quakes with change I can remember this and ease my way into the next big phase that I’ve called forth. But, if I don’t, please remind me to read this post.
….by the way, the picture is of my grandson right after he made his transition to this planet.