"All changes, even the most longed for, have their melancholy; for what we leave behind us is a part of ourselves; we must die to the one life before we can enter another." -Anatole France
I saw these words on Facebook this morning, and had to copy this quote posted by a friend, Michelle ....It blew me away. Really made me think...and I just had to put my thoughts into writing.
I read these words and realized this is SO true... and you don't realize it until after you've gone through a major change in life and are coming out of the other side of it.
You don't realize during the journey, or the process of growing, adapting and 'becoming', that it is a actually a grieving process--A dying to self...losing the old life or old You, or the comfortable old situation/environment you'd grown used to. During the process, you may think it is stress or maybe even depression you are experiencing. You may even feel anger, resentment, fear, or maybeyou feel none of these emotions. Maybe you just feel lost. Maybe you can't put a finger on or a name to any of your emotions. And you may not have a clue that you are grieving.
Others around you also may not recognize or understand --that even if your life change is a happy or positive one--that it IS still a grieving process you are going through. This can leave you feeling utterly alone, without support as you move through the phases of your journey or metamorphosis. The tough part is recognizing the melancholy for what it is, and that it is just part of the shedding/changing/growing process...and making the effort to reach out to effective support. This can be so hard to do. Especially if you don't even see the signs, or fully recognize it yourself.
While your journey has its ups and downs, it is fully worth it. As you emerge on the other end of the path, you may have an epiphany or finally be able to put your thoughts, feelings and experiences in perspective. But you will emerge stronger, having learned so much about yourself, and ultimately happier if you take from this process all of the positive, happy, good things...and finally give praise for the many blessings the journey has given you.
A journey of change can be tough. Especially when it is MAJOR. When it is bigger than you or anything you've ever seen or gone through...but you can do it. And you will. And life goes on....and on.
This quote brought to mind those experiencing Post Adoption Depression or Blues, and Post Partum Depression or even the pain of infertility...but these profound words spoken by Anatole France can be applicable also to anyone who has experienced something like divorce, death of a loved one... loss of a job, a friend, moving to a new state, or even graduating college.
Funny thing is....some people experience a couple of those things in their lifetime. However, Me? In the span of about 10 years - I experienced just about all of them! What a journey! But it is part of my life book...each one another chapter, each one another phase of change, joy, loss, and renewal...even reinvention maybe. But I finally realize the grieving process I've been through...now it is time to emerge. And FLY.....
I am a woman who moved 100 miles from home, married young, later graduated college at age 32, divorced from a 15 year marriage, survived the deaths of my grandmother and a few friends, the loss of two beloved dogs, then remarried...moved another 500 miles away, became a first-time mom through international adoption at age 42 and had a total 360* career change. Whew! What a wild ride it has been!