March…The Symbol for Life’s Transitions

Dear Reader:

Well yesterday must have decided to pose or model for this blog post…because it was  a “transitional” day in every way defined.

We were supposed to have another near 80’s day…and for a few minutes we might have gotten close… It started out cool, then excessively cloudy, then bright sun but accompanied with sudden gales of wind knocking off planters on the deck and porch…and if that wasn’t enough “unsettled” weather…these strange sudden downpours from nowhere would pop up and just as quickly disappear. There was something for everyone.

March didn’t start out like a lamb or a lion…it started out as a very confused giraffe, I think, who didn’t know whether to run, stand still, duck its head under its legs or keep stretching its neck to see what the next strange weather front was getting ready to do. Bizarre is the only word for yesterday’s weather here.

Most of the time seasonal transitions aren’t quite so dramatic…yet when we reflect back on our lives…aren’t their stages in it when we seemed to get hit by too many changes happening too quickly to adjust to our new lives comfortably?

We might still shudder at the memories.

It could have been a time of tragedy…losing a parent or parents and undergoing huge living transitions, a health issue that affected our lives either temporarily or chronically, the loss of any loved one whose lives had intertwined with ours, a physical move to another location in the country or even to a foreign country. The list could go on and on.

Even if we have been fortunate enough not to get hit with any of these prior scenarios…growth transitions can be pretty dramatic to each individual’s way of thinking and life time perception of themselves…Growing up is hard…no doubt about it.

We think we are too tall, too small, too freckly, too pale, too dark, too shy, too buck-teethed, too skinny, too fat and unfortunately all is takes is one mean comment at school and it takes years to get over an unkind and untrue statement about ourselves.

The term “finding ourselves” which is usually a life-time quest… has nothing to do with a geographical setting or place…it is more about finding our surroundings where we feel accepted and loved for who we are…not what we do or don’t do for a living.

At the stage of life I am in now…I have finally come to understand that the most powerful personal transitions are usually the least obvious in other’s eyes…because our changes are deeply embedded within us.

It has taken me a lifetime to accept me for me…no longer trying to please the world…but learning to accept my weaknesses as strengths, such as they keep me humble in the presence of the only “Person” I want or need to please…my Creator.

So until tomorrow…

My other “Ah-Ha” moment has been a hidden truth about all of our daily lives…and that belief is….

At some point one becomes their surroundings. So be careful who you surround yourself with and where you place yourself. Each year I am becoming more one with my garden…with the secret world of the beauty and kindness within.

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

I am slowly adding beauty to the area Jeff cleaned out for me outside my “office” window where Sammy the Cardinal and I meet each day.

I went to put two cards in the mail box to get off before our mail carrier arrived…When I first opened the box I thought I was too late…she had already come. But as I glanced again…it was a loaf of homemade bread by Dr. Linda Karges-Bone…my once student, then co-teacher, spiritual guidance counselor for me and always friend. Plus she makes the best homemade bread!

What a delightful surcie to find in my mailbox! Thank you Linda…Thank you “Dolphin Lady.”

 

 

 

 

 

About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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