Horne: Unplanned changes in life a necessity

Kelowna columnist reflects on the stages of life that people go through

Columnist Marjorie Horne.

Fall is a time of transition. The leaves are just beginning to change their color and the air now has a crispness to it that comes with the changing of the season. Having just moved from the condo we lived in for the past seven years back into a fairly large house, I reflect on the often unplanned paths our lives can take.

When me made that downsizing move seven years ago from our family home, my husband had been recently diagnosed with a heart condition and it made sense to give up the rigors of caring for a very large garden, albeit such a beautiful one.

When we were moving in, I emphatically told my husband, “We are never moving again! Moving is like going through labor, you somehow forget the intensity of the pain of it all. He just laughed and commented, “I don’t believe you, you can’t ever stay still in one spot for very long”.

I guess I have to say uncle on that one. The life changes we have experienced over the past several years are probably like many of you, with the unfolding of so many unexpected occurrences that could never have been predicted. Many of them wonderful and many of them challenging.

As I look out on my beautiful, small back garden, with many boxes still around me unpacked, I am grateful to be able to enjoy a bit of yard space once again and already am thinking of the spring when I will plant a few vegetables in the raised beds. My old dog Jake, although barely able to walk, saunters out with glee to smell the grass and plop himself down to sit in the sun to enjoy the outdoor space.

Life is busy and full. Running a business that is growing and developing in so many new ways is exciting and wonderful, but today I feel an aching in these old bones telling me I’m not as young as I think I am. So with Thanksgiving just around the corner, I take some time this Sunday morning to receive the many beautiful blessings I have received of late.

The creation of finding our new home with everything I had envisioned: a view of the lake; plenty of space to house my many business activities; a large bedroom and bathroom to make room for my very first grandbaby coming in March for visits with Mommy and Daddy; friendly and welcoming new neighbors and green space all around me with llamas and vineyards across the street. (Well, I never imagined llamas, but what a lovely bonus!)

As I launch a new division in my company Caresmart Seniors Consulting called All Settled In: Senior Relocation Services, I know that I am simply being reminded of the process of transition myself. How this is often a time of letting go, of trusting in the unfolding of the changes that are happening in your life and preparing to receive the joys that are possible in your new beginning.

For many seniors as they age, changing places from the comforts of the family home to seniors’ housing becomes a necessity for a variety of reasons.

The logistics of moving, as I have been reminded these past two weeks, can be daunting and exhausting.

The emotions that surface are often ones that bring a cavalcade of memories, uncertainty, fear of the unknown and sometimes resentment and trepidation of the change that is being presented. I had to sit down and have a good cry myself last night, because the overwhelm of all you are going through sometimes calls you to be still to just release and let go.

But having done that, today life looks bright anew as I allow myself to take in the wonder of how life unfolds. The possibilities that are ours for the taking if we just choose to participate, open to receive and to re-imagine in this time of our lives that is very different from the past.

Ramdesh Kaur speaks of this time of fall and transition this way: “This world, for all its chaos and challenges, is a beautiful world. The leaves could fall off the trees with no real fanfare, but instead they change into a rainbow that circles the globe, each leaf falling at its own time, spinning and twirling to the ground in graceful tumble. Humans are like that, too. Our lives could just exist and end without any real trace left on the world, and often we feel like that is exactly what is happening. But we grow and expand, we change our colors from green to yellow and red, we sway in the wind, and then finally we dance home to arms of our Creator in our final flight.”

Whatever is going on in your life for you right now, take the time to reflect this Thanksgiving on the wonder of you and of all that is good around you. Let your heart go through a transformation during this season that offers an opportunity for embracing gratitude for all that is. Connect to the beauty of your own experience in this world that is so full of wonder if you just give yourself some time to receive it. Look outside with fresh eyes and look inward with loving acceptance. We each can choose happiness as we sway in the breeze until our final dance begins to play its tune.

Marjorie Horne is the owner of Caresmart Seniors Consulting and host of AM1150’s Engaging in Aging

Radio Show, Sundays at 9am.Contact her at 250-863-9577 or marjorie@caresmart.ca