Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Tips for When You're Craving Change

"I hate change." I'm sure we've all heard that said, if not said it ourselves. Change can indeed be really hard, especially when we feel like it's happening to us rather than something we're choosing for ourselves. But as hard as it can be, it can also become sort of... normal.

In the quarter century of life I have lived thus far, I have moved a lot. And moves mean change, change, and more change!

I had the incredible privilege of growing up as an "MK" - a missionary kid. My parents left their hometown (they were high school sweethearts, and, in fact, all 6 members of my family were born in the same hospital!), beautiful house, and dear family to pursue training with New Tribes Mission. 
My family leaving for training with New Tribes Mission (1994)
That training in and of itself required several moves (from CT to WI, PA, MO, and back to CT) before we finally landed in Paraguay, South America. (And even once we got there, there were 5 more moves before I graduated from high school.)
At the airport and ready to fly to Paraguay for the 1st time! (1999)
One of the best things about moving so much was all of the wonderful people I met and the friends I have made. And by far the hardest part of moving so much was saying goodbye to all of those wonderful people and friends I made! 

Apart from those goodbyes, however, there was much excitement and adventure involved in moving. There were things I loved about each of the houses we lived in (and my mom made every one of them feel like HOME!). Setting up my bedroom each time was fun. Sometimes I had my own room, sometimes I shared with a sibling. There was even one house we lived in where all four of us shared a room! If there was anything I didn't like about some place we lived, well.. not to worry, we'd move again eventually! :)

Growing up I could never imagine living in the same house for the rest of my life. The thought of a 15-30 year mortgage was unfathomable. I've now lived in Wisconsin for over 7 years, which is the longest I've ever lived in one place consecutively (but even within this part of the state I've moved six times from dorms to apartments to duplex to house).

Whew. Are you exhausted reading that? My apologies. Moving on to the point I am trying to make...

That's a bit of my story. Wouldn't change it a bit. I had a fantastic childhood (in the future I'll have to write more about life in Paraguay!) and am exceedingly grateful for all I've learned and the perspective I've gotten from growing up in a third world country with a family in career ministry. (Besides, I met my hubby in '99 when we arrived in Paraguay!)

That history of moving has created an itch. When I've been in one place for a while, I start feeling the need for change. I start looking for it, expecting it. Sometimes I can feel a little bored or restless, as though my subconscious is saying.... what's next? 

Well, I'm not sure. We're right where we are for now. I love the house we live in, the church we are involved in, and the family we get to live near. Not that we won't move again, but for the foreseeable future we are here

So what do I do when I'm craving a little change? Here are some tips...

Travel Somewhere

This is a fun one. Get in the car or on a plane! We have family and friends spread all around the country (and the world, for that matter) and over the past 2 years of my daughter's life, I've had the privilege of traveling with her to California, Florida, California again, Illinois, Connecticut, and Montana. There's nothing like the buzz of an airport, the whirr of a plane, the sites and smells of a new place soothe that itch for change. 

Can't afford a trip? How about lunch at an airport. (I'm serious!) Or hop in the car and go for a drive. Getting away for a weekend, a day, or even a couple hours feels good. Sometimes we drive 40 minutes to the nearest Cracker Barrel. Stepping into that setting, I can imagine I'm in any of the other dozens of CB's I've eaten at around the country!

Looking for something a little closer to home? Here are some more ideas: 

Change Something

Ladies, this one's primarily for you. Hair and nails! 
Hair -- cut, color, or style!
Nails -- length, shape, or color!
It can be refreshing to simply look down at your hands or in the mirror and see a little change. 

Buy Stuff

Be careful with this one! ***Please do not misunderstand me. I am not suggesting that buying stuff (or any of these tips!) can deal with a heart of discontentment.*** That said, a new shower curtain in the bathroom, blanket on the bed, or throw pillows on the couch can bring a little flare of "change" into your life! 

Rearrange

Yep. Can't even count how many different living room arrangements we've tried in each place we've lived. It's always fun to see how the same stuff in a different place can make it feel like a whole new room!

The idea for this whole post actually came from the decision to move my dish rack *gasp!* from the left side of the sink to the right side of the sink. I kid you not, that's all it took. 

When the thought first occurred to me, I pushed it away. No way, I said to myself. You can't do something that drastic! I mean, it's always been on the left side of the sink! But the idea wouldn't leave me alone, so I finally gave in.

Before:

After: 

(Hmm... maybe just washing my dishes would have been enough of a "change" for today - ha! No, but seriously... look at all that available counter space! Loving it!) 

So for now, with just that simple little change, I feel almost like I'm in a new kitchen, but without any packing or goodbyes. I'm happy to be exactly where I am. 

2 comments:

  1. Oh my word, we just moved our dish rack from the left ot the right and it had the same drastic affect. Hahah, so funny :)

    ReplyDelete

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