The word "change" can elicit a multitude of responses. Some are verbal ("Yes!", "NO!", "When?", "NOW!", " 'Bout time." etc.), and some are emotional (panic, dread, excitement, confusion, etc.). It's a loaded word. And no matter if the change is good or bad, it is almost always unsettling. Something is going to be different.
This week I have felt very conflicted, frustrated and just plain unsettled. I do not have a counselor or therapist to talk to, so I will either tweet, blog or just sit and stew until I figure out what's going on. Many tweets and stew sessions later, I realize that the past few weeks has been all about change. No wonder I feel shaken.
For starters, my teaching schedule for next year has changed. I was going to be teaching 5th-8th grade Musical Theatre for two sessions, 9th-12th grade Musical Theatre for three sessions, and Film Making for three sessions. (We're on a three trimester system in our school. Or . . . we were.) After several versions of schedules were discussed, I'm teaching one session of 5th-8th grade (in those grades we went back to a two semester system), three sessions of 9th-12th (still trimesters there) and two sessions (trimester 2 and 3) of Film Making. All of this is going to work really, really well. I'm not complaining about the change - I'm actually happy about it because my courses don't overlap as much and I think I'll be a more effective teacher as a result. But . . . it's change. I'm having to shift my thinking for next year (and yes, I've already begun to think about next year - sometimes teachers do that in January. Especially when course descriptions for the course catalog are due).
The children's ministry at our church (in which my husband and I are very involved) has lost both the director and the assistant director in the past two months. Because of this change, the staff has decided to change the entire Vacation Bible School model this year. They want to "take it to the communities" and have meetings in back yards and community centers. This would effectively eliminate my involvement. I have been heading up the program for VBS (the opening and closing assemblies where we have skits, worship music and activities) since 2006. I love doing it - it's like doing a week of children's theatre once a year. It's a blast and we reach a LOT of kids. I told the head of the committee on Sunday that I thought the off-site idea was a big mistake, but I don't know if I have any clout. This particular change is upsetting and disappointing on top of being different. (However, it might mean that I just had two weeks in July open up. Road trip?)
Then there are little things - Hubby's schedule changing from week to week, basketball games changing, one of Princess' teachers abruptly left and now I have to break in a new one (ha!), I'm trying to fit in a workout now so my daily schedule has changed. It's a lot. I think it's enough to account for the unsettled feeling I have been experiencing.
Now, add all of this to the student issue I had this week (lying) and the parent issue I had (too long a story - but basically they are not happy with anything), and I've had a . . . week.
I skipped my workout this morning just to sit in the parking lot of the church and pray. No, I didn't go in. I didn't want to risk running into anyone and having to talk. I was afraid that were I to be addressed by anyone, I would either explode in anger or melt into a tearful puddle. I read a few of the Psalms (God bless having a Bible app on my smart phone!) and just laid out all of my frustrations before God. I feel more calm now. I know that change is inevitable and that it is what I make of it. I know that I'm not doing it alone. And I trust that God is using all of these situations to mold me and to make me into what He wants me to be. Sculptors are not gentle with the marble they use for their statues. They chip away forcefully with hard implements. Rocks on the river bed are not created smooth and polished, they get that way from being tossed and tumbled. Right now, I can relate to those rocks.