“The process or a period of changing from one state or condition to another.”
On January 11th my mother passed. It was completely unexpected. She had Alzheimers, however she was in fair physical condition. Certainly nothing that made us believe she would be leaving us. After I experienced the initial shock, surreal nature of the news, grief, all the arrangements and the funeral, I found myself thinking a LOT about the word transition.
I found myself saying to people, my mom has transitioned from this state of being to another. I believe this with all my heart. Similar to how babies emerge/transition from the womb into this reality, I think the same process applies when we leave/transition from this reality into the next. This brings me comfort. I imagine she’s not gone, just not here in the same form as what I was used to.
From the time we’re conceived, we are in a state of transition.
We have been fortunate in my family. We have experienced very little death. My two grandmothers transitioned over 20 years ago, and it was only two years ago when we lost an aunt, uncle and great aunt on my mom’s side. We are three generations that pretty much knew our current and great aunts uncles and grandmothers.
It has now been almost three weeks, and, I have found myself in many moments recognizing the word ‘transition’ has entered my awareness. It occurs to me, from the time we’re conceived, we are in a state of transition, especially if I go back to the definition mentioned above “the process or period of changing from one state or condition to another.” Isn’t that what life is about? A constant state of transition. We transition from the womb into this reality. From a baby to a toddler, infant to child, to pre-teen, teenager, young adult, and then full fledge adult. Even during our adult phase there are sub phases, from young adult to senior. Many cultures define transitions in many ways. For example, as women we move through, maiden, goddess, crone, for men, youth, warrior, sage. Some cultures even have wonderful transition rituals that signify the movement or transition from one state to another.
Could we not view the movement from one state of being to another as a ‘death’ of sorts? We never go back, at least physically, to our former states of being. How often do we find ourselves mourning the loss of our youth, or childhood or young adult life? It made me wonder why we put so much emphasis on mourning the transition with what we define as ‘death’?
Grief is tied to my unresolved issues.
Do I miss the presence of my mom, grandmother’s, my aunt, and uncle… ABSOLUTELY. Do I feel the presence of each one? YES! They are present when they enter my awareness. I can feel them.
My grief is tied to the degree I have resolved any issues with the person who is no longer in this reality. I was fortunate with my mom. We had our ups and downs, like most mothers and daughters, and, I was in a good place with her before she transitioned. With that comes a peace I didn’t anticipate.
I began to look at my whole life thus far…to recognize all the different phases of transition I have been through. Some named above, others include being single, then married, then single again. Those phases of transition taught me a LOT about my beliefs, values and attitudes about love. AND… the exploration continues. Working in organizations to working for myself, I’ve learned a lot about what it means to create and co-create. I’ve noticed each transition has been an opportunity for me to grow and discover more about who I believed myself to be.
The Gift of transition
The gift of my mom’s transition has been my reflection of, who else do I want to become? What else do I want to do? I noticed all the things that I thought I could not do seem completely doable. What stopped me before? All the voices in my intellect. All my second guessing mySELF. I’ve noticed so many messages about ‘living’ in the now coming into my awareness. That we only have this ‘one’ life as we know it to be. Who am I willing and daring enough to choose to BE? What if I release mySELF from the filters that stop me in my tracks?
What transition awaits me if I choose to step into a space of possibility? Of not knowing? I mean isn’t that the question each phase of transition asks? On some level I know my mom ‘chose’ to transition. She knew she was in a state that did not match who she knew herself to be. Her gift to me, the question, “Do I chose to shape my world, or be shaped by the world?”
Thank you MOM!