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Change is as constant as time moving forward.
Managing change is important in everyone's life. Change comes in all shapes and sizes from job changes, significant other changes, weight and fitness changes, address changes, and on it goes. Sometimes the change is you as you are Searching for a Healthy Life.
As an adult, I learned that a good friend is hard to come by, unlike the multitude of friends we acquire during our school journey.
Friends we make as an adult really feel more like acquaintances than a friend who knows you well. Interaction is on the surface and feelings and inner workings of these adult friends are often not well known.
This was not the case with my friend and neighbor who moved here from England. She and her husband came with their 3 children. Their middle daughter was the same age as our daughter. Our girls became fast friends and are to this day.
Watching them grow over the past 6 plus years has been fun to watch.
My friend is special. She is full of energy and ideas.
Our friendship started slowly. Over time as we got to talking as neighbors tend to do, and even though we grew up in different countries, we realized we actually had a lot in common.
We were both part-time working moms, who shared many of the same values and ideas for raising a family and keeping our homes.
A Friend From Europe
At the time I had never been out of the states, so having a friend from Europe was interesting.
Her accent and speech, as well as sayings, were always refreshing and often enlightening.
From the “boot" of the car or the trunk to her husband being “chuffed’ about getting a positive review at his job. Or her description of neighbors who were updating their outside home facades as “tarting up the front of their homes”.
My friend and I had many discussions from politics in the US and England to the best paint colors for our kitchens. Her perspective always came from a fresh point of view and was enlightening without judging.
Being from different backgrounds meant that our conversations often needed to delve deeper to understand each other. Maybe that’s how we moved from just acquaintances to being friends.
While my friend told me a year ago of their plans to move back to Europe, a secret part of me always hoped that their plan would fall through, even as I watched the plan slowly fall into place.
Now suddenly they are leaving tomorrow. I guess in a way we have been slowly saying goodbye since she first told me of their plan. But even now as I think of their imminent departure I feel cheated of our conversations and camaraderie and saddened by not seeing our daughters run through our backyards to swing or play of a game of hide and seek.
I searched the internet for support for what I am experiencing and found tinybuddha.com. Hannah the blog's author lists five steps for managing change.
Changes happen to all of us and finding ways to manage how we feel about that change is important. These steps could apply to a variety of situations.
What change are you planning for in your life? Take a peek at my post on Goal Setting and Planning to Manage Your Change.
Check out these 5 steps for managing change.
Five Steps for Managing Change
- Learn to differentiate between what you can and can't control.
- Keep a journal to document and process your thoughts.
- Develop routines and habits to stay grounded.
- Talk with others about your experience.
- Take care of your basic needs as they are the foundations of mental and physical health.
Probably the most important strategies for me are differentiating what I can and can't control and developing new routines.
I have accepted that my friend and her family will leave, but they will be very much as they were. They will just be living in a different country.
While they lived next door there were times when my friend and I wouldn't see each other for a few weeks. Often due to crazy kid schedules. I believe it will be important for me to routinely text her just like she was still living here. Keeping up regularly with a long-distance friend is important to nurture the friendship.
So with email and planning, we will be able to continue our conversations, but it will not be the same as having my friend right next door.
So my friend and her family have been gone for almost a year. We have kept in touch via text and I feel that not much has changed. Our daughters text weekly and they are as close they were when they lived right next door.
In fact, we are planning a trip to visit them. Watch for my post where I plan this trip to Europe.
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