“Sometimes, life’s challenges are tough to deal with. You will succeed if you focus your thoughts on how to overcome the challenge.” – Catherine Pulsifer
It is back to school season. It happens every year and is considered a routine transition. Yet, the back to school vibe is everywhere and makes itself known by:
- the plethora of notebooks, pencils and backpacks crowding the stores
- families making the rounds like coveys of quail to required physicals, needed haircuts and clothing stores
- school buses making practice runs in the mornings
- public swimming pools closing
not to mention the general frantic-ness in the atmosphere that says: Transition underway!
In some ways we are always in transition. We:
- arise in the morning, live out a day, then head back to sleep
- go to work (or school), move from one activity to another, then back to our nests at home
- get in our cars, drive somewhere, take care of business then return
Most transitions are routine, efficient, even mindless with little risk. However, what about transitions:
- from a familiar routine to a new one?
- that involve more than just you?
- that involve some or a lot of risk?
- that involves moving into an unknown situation?
- or that one forced upon you, that broadsides and smacks you in the gut?
- when it turns just plain ugly….
Routine Transitions Turned Ugly
When it comes to the back to school thing, I am more of an observer, dodging the various activities surrounding that aspect of this season. However, it happens to be the time of year I make my annual rounds of physical checkups. Routine right?
Not so much. This time last year a bad report broadsided me as a result of the annual physical exam. What it was is not important now, but it plunged us into the world of medical protocols and unwanted attention.
I immediately took my own advice, I formed a support structure. One that was simple, firm and kept me, not the medical establishment, in charge. It consisted of:
- surrounding myself with a small but powerful group of like minded Christian prayers,
- leaning on my spouse and those like minded believers for support,
- educating myself on options in my case – inside and outside of mainline medicine,
- streamlining my activities while keeping a strong daily routine,
- refusing to make the condition the center of my thoughts, words, or activities,
- choosing to trust the Lord at a whole new level
I am happy to report, all is well. The treatment I took is a distant memory with barely a burp in our lives.
I was intentional about every step taken. Yes, I listened to advice, then checked it out. I said yes to some, and no to some. I won’t lie, it was challenging to stay centered and focused, but the alternative was not a road I wanted to travel.
In this back to school time of year, with all of its hub-bub and activity, I am grateful that this year’s back to school transition season is – back to normal.
Is there a time when you were broadsided with a gut punch? What steps did you take to get maintain stability?
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