"We must become the change we want to see." -Mahatma Gandhi
My favorite response to that somewhat familiar aphorism comes from Red Room member Teresa Burns Gunther: "Easy for him to say."
Transitions can be about getting rid of something (an old idea, a bad relationship, some weight), adding something (a great new job, a spiritual practice, a good habit), or just making a needed adjustment to a constant in your life. But almost without exception, change is hard. Last week, we asked Red Roomers to blog on the subject of transitions.
Henry David Thoreau said, "Things do not change; we change."
I'm not completely sure I understand this, because external events—an earthquake, a war, winning the lottery—do change our own circumstances. However, it's true that how we respond to events is up to us. Do you think changes can be neatly divided into proactive and reactive examples, or does Thoreau's quote mean each transition is a bit of both?
Three posts stood out this week:
McCord "Mac" Clayton's first post for Red Room is a reflection on parents difficulty in letting go as their kids grow up. It's funny, touching and inspiring. Enjoy "The Dad App."
In "One Fine Dentist," author Cynthia S. Becker finds out that aging brings unexpected transitions in seemingly routine relationships that become important.
Verbal confusion has accompanied member Susan Brown as she adjusts to her father's death. As commenter Mara Buck says, "Transitions and Tenses" is "an intelligently considered post at such a time of sadness."
A few featured bloggers will receive books by Red Room authors. In her extraordinary memoir The Butterfly Mosque, G. Willow Wilson describes the radical transition she underwent as an American who moved to Egypt and converted to Islam. The protagonist in Kim Culberton's young adult novel Songs for a Teenage Nomad has moved to twelve places in eight years, with music her only constant. Life is constant change for the traveling "festival queens" in David Valdes Greenwood's The Rhinestone Sisterhood, a nonfiction study of contestants for titles like "Catfish Queen" and "Swine Queen." These young women's lives are a far cry from the large-scale commodification and so-called glamour of pageants we see (or avoid) on television.
You can see all of the transitions blog entries listed here. I hope you'll read several and comment on a few of your favorites. All of Red Room's past blog topics are listed here, and suggest a few more in the comments. Thanks as always for blogging!
–Huntington W. Sharp, Senior Editor, Red Room