“In the game of life, less diversity means fewer options for change. Wild or domesticated, panda or pea, adaptation is the requirement for survival.” Cary Fowler
Do you adapt easily to change? Do you dislike and resist change? Can you see value in change?
Change is inevitable. What we do with it is what matters. Lately, my life is an experiment in finding the best way to adapt to being in a wheel chair and performing the daily duties that I need to perform. I’ve experimented with a wheel walker, which can move through the house more quickly than the chair, but it hurts the knee that it supports. Crutches are helpful except when I’m feeling dizzy.
Now all simple normal actions require more strength and have to be approached in a new way. I can’t just stand up. I have to pull up or push up. I will definitely have more strength when this situation is over.
There Is Value In Change
All in all, this experience is just another reminder that there is value in change. I’ve been forced to slow down. I’ve had to let other people help, which is always difficult for me, but I simply don’t have the energy I had or the actual physical ability to do it all. I have to accept certain limitations.
I know these limitations are essential, but temporary. I can’t bear weight if I want to heal. I have to frequently elevate my leg in order to prevent blood clots. This has become my reading or napping time. Before the accident, I rarely allowed myself to nap—I had too much to do! What I needed to do before is now a requirement.
Change May Force Us To Do What We Need To Do
So, I am learning to adapt in order to survive—creating a new dance for my life that in some ways feels like an improvement and in others like a regression. It’s a bit more sedate than I prefer, especially in spring when all the trails have opened up and the ice melted. My feet are itching for another hike and I’m missing the best time to take nature photos for my blog.
Relationships Adapt To Individual Changes
But this is a very nurturing dance and is not just about healing. It’s a challenge for me and my fiancé. Can we, as a couple, adapt? Can he become my caretaker for a few weeks? How do we negotiate these challenges?
To some extent, we would have to adapt to change any way to learn to live together. With my broken ankle, we simply have additional aspects of the relationship to which we must adapt. While it may stretch our abilities, the outcome has been good. This is the real thing. We are committed. The relationship will survive and we will eventually return to our normal pattern of being equally participating partners.
Change May Be A Spiritual Gift
On a spiritual level, I am enjoying more peace and quiet. We all need some, and I used to tell myself several times a day to stop and rest or meditate, but I didn’t. I kept going, and so in that moment when I needed to be totally in the moment and carefully consider the option of stepping onto the rock where I fell, I was thinking more about where I wanted to be.
Now I pay attention to every moment that I move. I am aware of where I place my hand and foot for each move I make. When I don’t, I risk falling again. I am learning to be more creative with my adaptation and so it becomes easier. It is a much more complex dance than the one I was doing.
Much Good May Come From Adaptation
Adaptation is often like that. Difficult and uncomfortable at first. Our resistance may kick in to make it more challenging. It may be difficult in the beginning to learn a new dance, but as we practice it becomes easier. Before we know it, we may be waltzing around the floor like Fred Astaire and Ginger Rodgers, loving life despite the complex foot work.
© 20124 Georganne Spruce ZQT4PQ5ZN7F5