I’ve been ruminating on transitions lately, on the many in my own life recently, and in the lives of the people I love best and most. My focus as a writer has shifted a little over the past few months, in ways I’ve partially discussed here, such as the decision to expand the Pruxnae universe into a series. Other changes I’ve kept to myself, holding them closely to my chest to reveal at a later date.
There have also been big changes on the home front. My son just hit a milestone and is now officially an adult. Watching him grow from a sweet baby into an articulate young man has been full of moments tender and bittersweet. I’m so proud of who he’s become and what he’s accomplished in his life. But those are his accomplishments to share, and only mine to brag about, as any parent would.
Richard’s mother is mentally strong during this hardest part of her life, but physically declining, as we expected she would be. For those of you who are new to this blog, Richard is my alpha reader slash developmental editor and one of my closest friends. He held my hand (literally) after my mother died six years ago. I’m sorry to say that I will now be holding his hand through a similar hardship, though I’m happy to lend my shoulders to him and his mother, as they have lent their wisdom and strength to me.
So, lots of changes here, some positive, some inevitable. One of my high school English teachers always said (and I’m paraphrasing here) that the only thing we can count on is that everything changes. Coach Wayne’s nugget has stuck in my head for decades now, and becomes truer the older I get. Things change. Life happens. People move in and out of our lives, sometimes so gradually we look back and wonder when they really entered and how we could possibly have let them go. At other times, they breeze through, barely leaving an impression beyond the soft heartache of never having known them well.
And we endure, not out of some conscious desire to remain, but because we know nothing better. We continue on, accepting the seasons as they roll from winter’s frost into summer’s heat and back again, only dimly aware that our role in the grand universe is inconsequential outside our own narrow purpose. We exist, we adapt, we change to fit our surroundings and the newness of our situations, often without pondering the transition or even registering it. It simply is, like the sun cresting the horizon day after day, unquestioned. It is only when the sun fails to rise that we miss it.
And so it goes. Change is the one true constant. (I believe those were Coach Wayne’s exact words.) It’s the only thing we can count on. That doesn’t make change easier, but it does foster an appreciation for the people whose presences grace our lives, however fleetingly, and for the moments we share while they are upon us, long before they fade into the shadows of memory.