Weekly Update - September 15, 2023
Last weekend was one of those simultaneously crazy and wonderful times. Matthew came down for the first week of football season (watching the first day of the NFL has become a father / son tradition for us). Elizabeth came home from college for the first time. We all had lunch with Alex and Big Justin and Baby Theo.
It was all family for a few days. It was a great reminder of how things used to be all the time. Only no one was fighting over the bathroom, and I didn't have to yell at anyone to take the recycling out.
It was also a reminder of how things change. Circumstances shift, relationships alter, and people grow. There is a constant need to adjust.
This happens pretty dramatically when kids leave home. The family unit is literally reconfigured. Everyone has to find equilibrium in the new normal. While this may be one of the most dramatic examples of this phenomenon, the fact is we are all adjusting all the time. Our circumstances - our relationships - are constantly changing.
Friends who are close for one season of our life become distant in another. How many of you still have the same best friend you had in elementary school? Or are still in touch with your freshman year roommate? Does it happen? Sure. But change is way more common than stability.
Our first instinct when thinking about these changes is to be sad. I admit, it saddens me that we don't still have a house full of kids. Sometimes. And sometimes I am grateful for the fact that it is a little more quiet, and feels a little less hectic.
When things change there is an immediate tendency to panic. Change is scary as fuck. When we don't know what the future holds, we tend to feel unsettled. Unsettled turns to frustration and frustration can turn into anger. We want to control outcomes and know the future.