Making Space for Change
Even the color on these hydrangea blossoms is slowly changing
“Sign, sign, everywhere a sign.” Ah, this famous 1970 song by The Five Man Electrical Band is looping in my head. There are signs of change all around us. I hear the cicadas buzzing when I’m working in the yard. The hydrangeas are in full bloom and the sedum blooms are turning a faint blush color. The bees are out in full force. Trees are beginning to change, startling me when I see the colored leaves. The dew is heavy on the grass in the morning. We are losing daylight as darkness descends earlier, like a blanket across the land, here in Minnesota. All of this is happening, for those who have eyes to see, even while we want to ignore the signs and keep living in an endless summer. After all, we have a week in the 90’s ahead of us still. But change is happening.
“Then he turned to his disciples and said privately, ‘Blessed are the eyes that see what you see.’ -Lk. 10:23
My husband started a new job last month. It was a change that came to us both as a surprise, after a long time faithfully ministering in a parish community. He prayed, discerned, and Made Space for change in his life. He landed well and is navigating all the change in his professional ministerial life incredibly well. I’m proud of him.
Our youngest daughter will start kindergarten next week. She is jumping for joy excited about it. She wants to ride the bus and follow her big brother to the sprawling elementary school. I am relieved to be finished with preschool tuition payments but at the same time sad that these preschool years are over, forever gone. She flourished and grew. Time goes so fast. She will never again be this young. This pure. The bus rides, playground, and peers will all begin to influence—I’ve seen it with our oldest son, how quickly innocence is lost. Time goes so fast.
And at the mention of time going fast, I find myself approaching my mid-fifties feeling a bit more tired, with never enough time to do all that must be done but still staying up past 1 AM to try, and marveling that I am mothering two littles while others in my graduating class are seeing their children off to college or even becoming grandparents already. We make plans for our life and God laughs.
My friend Laura Kelly Fanucci wrote a piece about her life, about what it’s like to be in her forties, and published it on Instagram. Women from all over are responding by following her lead and following suit—telling the truth of their lives by the decade of the life they are in. It’s a bit like Taylor Swift’s Eras Tour, I think, as we get a glimpse of other women’s lives in their 20’s, 30’s, 40’s and beyond. We can look back, we can look ahead, and we find ourselves in it all.
The common thread? Change. Our lives are always changing in each decade we live. Nothing ever stays the same, lest we grow stagnant. And I trust that God, ever faithful, is with me through it all.
Here's my attempt to describe my 50’s as I know it:
Friendship in Our Fifties
grateful / mothering littles / so much gray to cover / waiting for wisdom / still learning / so crabby / must be menopause / stretched so thin / unending laundry / always behind / where did the money go / will I live to see grandchildren / accompanying / staying connected to birth families / bedtime snuggles / centering black voices / this damn virus / trying to make new friends / three decades ministering in this church / pot belly / giving my all / whisper of the Spirit / is this forever / too much anger / never thought I’d see it / january 6 / betrayal / how could you vote for him / deep grief / saving democracy / more aches / making space / hugs & kisses / on the go / rebuilding our life / how will their futures unfold / they’re so loud / making memories / creation / breathe / motherhood came late / so grateful
WENDY CICHANSKI CADUFF
What does your life look like, in this era? Follow this simple writing prompt and tag @thismessygrace in it to let her know you were inspired and are writing the truth of your life. Go ahead and tag me too: @wendycaduff so I can share on my Instagram or add yours right here in the comments on our Making Space Substack. It’s fun, reflective, and oh, so satisfying to do.