What’s your relationship with change?

As a Taurus, I’m told I don’t like change. Yet, my life-line so far has been a series of interruptions and situations that have forced me to adapt.  After college the longest I’ve ever lived in the same town was for about three years, and that’s not counting the times I moved within the town.

Now, I won’t go so far as to say I love it. I certainly don’t enjoy the inconvenience of moving often. But Life has a way of tossing monkey wrenches and kitchen sinks our way, and well, we do the best we can, don’t we?

Upon further reflection, I had four childhood homes when we lived in Hawaii. Although, this is not to say that I didn’t enjoy stability, or long periods of stability, I did. It’s just I went to three different high schools when I was in the 9th grade. I’ve been a minority as well as part of the majority (which if you think about it requires you to figure stuff out). I could go on, but I think you get the point; all of this happened during those formative “growing up” years.

So sometimes I wonder how much our foundation years influence our adult years. In other words, was I meant for a nomadic life? Am I okay with change because it’s what I know?

An astrologer once told told me that I would be doomed to go from relationship to relationship, and that I’d never get married, or find a life-long partner. Can you imagine being told that? Her words haunted me until I realized I accidentally gave her the wrong time of birth. Perhaps now after confirming things with my actual birth certificate and not my mother’s memory, I’ve changed my luck.

Red car taxi dashboard covered with good luck charms [Chiang Mai, Thailand, 2013]
Of course, that opens up Pandora’s cookie tin of Philosophy and Religion: Do we have free will? Are we the captain of our Fates? Frankly I’d rather not get into that tangled-ball-of-thread topic here, but I do believe we are in charge of our destinies. Maybe the romantic in me believes in a little of both.

Or maybe I’m simply the product of my generation. Cohorts bound together with the twine of time, trapped between the bewildering and dazzling array of choices that no generation before us had ever experienced. But choice is a blessing, not a curse, you say, and that’s why we choose the same jam or salad dressing when we run out, right?

I wonder though what it must be like to grow up and die in the same ‘ol town. There’s a comfortable quality to that idea that borders on extreme monotony as well. I can’t imagine, but that’s what past lives are for – to take another road, to have made another choice. Perhaps this is what makes change possible, big heaving gulps of it, fear of boredom. Or fear of sticking around long enough to learn how to manage it.

I think I’ll just stay here for a while. [Phayao, Thailand, 2013]
Yet, it sometimes feels like we are given no choice at all, and by that I mean the choice is made for us. The situation is untenable, unbendable.  We stay in the broken relationship, or we leave when the fear of drowning in dysfunction and losing ourselves finally outweighs any fearful imaginary monsters we’re clinging to.

Change can also be a disruptive force that creates chaos. Some folks are attracted to that even though we human beings don’t do to well under trying circumstances. But allow me to state my case; I don’t like drama. I’ve had my fill of it growing up, and I don’t relish it. I don’t like conflict. I’m often rather agreeable for the sake of keeping the peace. But don’t mistake this for not standing up for myself, or overthinking what I shoulda-coulda said or done.

Adventure is closely related to change, or can be the result of it. Perhaps here we have finally stumbled upon a grain of understanding. If given the choice between a road taken, and one that I have not, I will choose a new path. This is how I’ve ended up in perceived boring places like Nebraska and Iowa. “Oh, I’ve never been there. Let’s go.” But this doesn’t always work out. Choosing new does not equal better.

Then there’s the mental transition (before the change) and the adjustment period (after the change) to navigate through and manage. Usually the actual event is nothing in comparison because you’re in the act of doing it.

When we move to Rayong in December, we’ll be ready. I didn’t expect this change especially since we recently moved back to Chiang Rai, Thailand earlier this year. In fact, I originally thought we’d settle down in CR for a spell, but there’s something about returning to the place you left. Sometimes it feels like a homecoming, while other times, it doesn’t quite work anymore. We’re in the latter camp. I fear Cambodia has changed me too much, and living in CR has turned out to be temporary landing pad where we readjusted our compass, and refueled.

Chiang Rai to Rayong! What are we doing???

It looks like we’re moving from the north to the south, but technically we’re moving to Central Thailand. Although when I told my mom she kept referring to Rayong as “the south”, and after I kept correcting her, she finally explained that to Northerners anything south of their town is south. Directions are not Thais strong point.

I’m so excited. Soon we’ll visit Rayong, and get a sense of what we’ve gotten ourselves into. And then I’ll be in the throes of planning, second-guessing, and all those other activities that we go through when we make a big move. I should be an expert by now, but I don’t feel that way, but maybe after this move I will!

 

What’s your relationships with change? Has your life been relatively smooth sailing?

24 thoughts on “What’s your relationship with change?

  1. My dad has lived in the same house (the houses where I grew up) for nearly 50 years. During that time my mom has moved at least a dozen times between three different states. It’s no wonder I’m confused: I hate moving, and yet I moved from one side of the world to another with virtually no possessions or planning and eight years later I still don’t know whether I’m coming or going. Life is weird.

    Anyway congrats on your move! Can’t wait to see pictures of the new town.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, my BF’s parents have lived in the same house he grew up in. The stability must be nice! Although a lot of folk who I know who have lived in the same place for decades have a tendency to be hoarders. Hahahaha. I suppose it’s inevitable, but that would drive me up the wall.

      I understand the move situation. We both left the US around the same time with equally little idea as to what the future would hold. I’ve decided though I’m okay with it. There’s what we want, what we need, and that place in between.

      Thanks for the well wishes Heather! I’m so excited.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I wonder if it really does influence us to grow up moving around a lot. I moved around until about the age of ten, when I settled down for the next fifteen years or so, before moving around Asia myself. But I never saw myself hanging around. I always had wanderlust, otherlust, anywhere-but-here-lust. I fought actual panic at the idea of doing what some of my friends did; getting married right out of high school or in college, staying in the same town, having kids in a suburban neighborhood and growing old there. I think I ran so far away to get away from that image.

    But yes, change is tough. It was always tough, whenever I did it. It’s tough now. It’s tough every day, and I find myself fighting for things to stay the same before I catch myself doing it. I’ve started noticing people my own age disliking change in the same way our parents did, and THAT’s freaking me out even more.

    For instance, when the Cursed Child came out, people were upset that it changed their perception of how the story went. People MY AGE. It’s ridiculous. Things change, we change, places change, people change. But our brains are wired to resist, so we do.

    Regardless, I hope this next place is even more awesome, and I hope it brings with it so much hope and life. And you’ll be near the sea! Always a good place to be. ^^

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Interesting. I didn’t know that you moved around a lot during your younger years. What was the reason if you don’t mind me asking? My father was in the military so that was our excuse. Before my childhood in Hawaii, there was Kansas and Oklahoma which I don’t remember because I was a toddler.

      But Hawaii had that same feeling that you mentioned, that feeling like I could end up here forever. I would hear how many kids who joined the military would end up back in Hawaii because the Mainland was too different, and they missed home. And since Hawaii is unique, I understood that feeling, but was mortified by it as well.

      Change is tough. I always think of the quote, “don’t mistake movement for improvement”. It frightens me into complacency. And it makes me think about whether or not the change I want is really progress, or is it something else? In this case though, the change is necessary. And if I’m wrong, well, I’m wrong.

      Thanks for your kind words, as always! They mean so much. I’m looking forward to seeing the new city, and what it has to offer. xo

      Liked by 1 person

      1. My dad’s work moved us around. I was born in WA, moved to TX, then NC, then back to TX, all within about 8 years, so it felt like a lot more. It still feels weird to have a childhood home that I’ve had for more than 10 years now. So even though I didn’t move that much, I think because I was so young, it left that impression.

        But yes, I agree that sometimes change is absolutely necessary. And hey, it’s all in what we make of it.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Good luck with the move! I have never heard of Rayong but it looks like it’s on the coast, I hope there’s a nice beach nearby 😀
    I am always scared and anxious when the change is known but hasn’t happened yet. I am a worrier. Then when the change happens it is completely fine and I get used to it very fast. Story of my life!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m a worrier, too. Not fun. I like to plan so when change happens I want to be in control as much as possible. I’m also a big problem solver, so again, there’s that control element, that desire to fix things, and sometimes it drives me (and everyone around me) crazy!

      Rayong proper is a “typical working town” from what I can tell, but since the nice beaches are nearby but not too nearby the town remains free of most tourists. And that will be interesting and a new thing for me because I usually live in touristic cities.

      Thanks!

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  4. Cool, more big changes on the horizon! At least this move won’t be as dramatic as Cambodia was. Part of boredom is sitting with your mind, in Buddhist practice anyway. Seeking out consistent change might be a coping mechanism of avoiding dealing with thoughts and feelings you don’t want to face. Just my reflection as a meditator.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh, for sure. Something I think about often is “don’t mistake movement for improvement”. It’s my go-to mantra whenever I get restless, and it allows me to think about whether or not I’m addicted to change, the idea of change, or what is it I really need/want.

      In this case, I am not being completely honest as to why we’re moving again for a variety of reasons. The challenge about blogging about your life is being as truthful as you can, but still protect “the not so innocent”. 555+

      But you’re right. This move shouldn’t be as drastic as Cambodia. And yet, I miss my life there, too! I suppose I could get angry at the circumstances which my life has thrown at me that have forced me to change. Then again, all these events could be part of a (higher) plan that I’m not aware of at this moment.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. My mom still lives in the house we were living in when I was born. Once she thought about downsizing to a townhouse, and I was shocked at the idea that “home” wouldn’t be there anymore. My childhood was very stable when it came to living situation.
    But I still flew the coop when I was 18. First across the country, then across the world. I do loathe change and moving though. I’m planning to move after this school year again and the thought of it is nails on chalkboards in my mind. But like you said, eventually you settle into a new place and it’s all good. Best of luck with your move!!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. When my mom told us she had to sell the house, I was shocked, too, and unhappy about the change. But I knew that it was her decision to make, and it wasn’t an easy one. When I go back home I visit it, but I’m saddened by how much it has changed. It’s no longer our home. Although when I see another house we moved from, I’m pleased with what the new owners have done with it – it’s filled with flowers.

      Thank you. Good luck to you, too!

      Like

  6. I’m with you. I’m always moving and changing and it stresses me out–and I always wonder why I can’t just stay in one place–but then I’m up and moving again. Maybe it’s in our blood.
    Rayong is by the beach? That could be nice!! Keep us updated on how it is down there! Is it your first time living in the south?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, you understand! Ugh. I truly would like to stabilize, but it’s not in the cards just yet. And a very astute observation and question, Mary – this will be our first time down south. Prior to this, I haven’t even visited much further than Bangkok, just to Hua Hin which is a popular beach destination. This leaves A LOT of the south that I haven’t been to so it should open up new doors and experiences. I’m particularly interested in how the people will be different, the language, and the food. It’s supposed to get spicier the further south you go!

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  7. For a variety of reasons, I still live in the same house that my parents bought and moved into when I was a few months old. It’s a weird feeling knowing the young kids I see going to and from school (I live in close proximity to three schools; the same ones I attended for primary, junior high, and high school) probably don’t have the same perception I do of how the neighborhood has changed in times before they existed. I never had the college dorm experience, either, and the home I live in is the only one I have ever known. I can’t imagine what it’ll be like one day to move out and live elsewhere but who knows where I will be in a couple of years. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow. Wow. You and I could not be more different in this regard. But yes, you must know your city, your neighborhood so incredibly well and that’s always fascinating to. I have friends who are able to navigate big cities they grew up in with such ease that it is truly admirable.

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      1. There definitely is a familarity to the neighborhood and surroundings and being used to the convinence of nearby markets and shops. It actually took me a long time to start becoming curious and/or actually visiting areas I knew about but never really been to. In a way I am still exploring, I guess.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. “I wonder though what it must be like to grow up and die in the same ‘ol town. There’s a comfortable quality to that idea that borders on extreme monotony as well. I can’t imagine, but that’s what past lives are for – to take another road, to have made another choice. Perhaps this is what makes change possible, big heaving gulps of it, fear of boredom. Or fear of sticking around long enough to learn how to manage it.”

    I think living in a town or big city that is full of diverse people and with at least 1 local college or university can help a lot in terms of circulating new people permanently or temporarily and with them, new ideas/ways of living. I grew up in a city of 30,000 which mushroomed now to probably 200,000. The Ontario city had 2 universities, one of them strong in high tech and engineering. That affected my school class composition because some classmates were children of university profs. whose whole families came from a different part of Canada/U.S. or Europe.

    So I am convinced how a small city /town can be rejuvenated with positive impact…aside from being a tourist town/city which has other challenges that are totally different.

    I agree that physically moving households is a headache.

    Admittedly, I love Canada and after living in 3 different regions, I love it even more for what it offers. The regions are different enough that it’s enough change for me. I don’t mind change, it’s just preferred I have the choice to make the change rather than be forced into a corner without options…to do it my way. 🙂

    What is important to me, is the knowledge if I change, I will always be loved by those who know me best.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Love that last paragraph. So sweet, and true! I think you’ve had the best of both worlds, having lived in very distinct regions of Canada. And of course, enjoying stability and having a community.

      I used to believe that small college towns were best, but I’ve now seen that an influx of students keeps wages low. So even though I loved the small town of Chico California I couldn’t make a living there. I suppose like anyplace it depends on the town and demographics.

      Thanks for stopping by Jean 🙂

      Like

  9. Best wishes on your move to Rayong! While I too don’t relish change, it very often finds me and shoves me along. I tend to appreciate the change only afterwards. As for the astrologer, it’s all a matter of perspective, isn’t it? She could just as easily have told you that you would have grand adventures and dance from relationship to relationship with tall dark strangers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hmmm. Good point about appreciating change after the fact.

      Yes, the astrologer was particularly sour and negative. I was trying to figure her out because I had had positive experiences with others before her. But I won a free reading through a school auction, so thank goodness, it was free 😛

      Thanks for the good wishes! xo

      Liked by 1 person

  10. New adventures. YaY! I am not big on unexpected change. I am a planner. So surprises are not my thing. BUT I’m always up for a new adventure. I hope the transition will go well, Lani.

    Liked by 1 person

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