To immerse ourselves in the pursuit of ourselves.
Time is simply the flow of change. We are each a river.
To stand on one bank and imagine the other side, to feel the swiftness of current and the chill of the water and wind on our skin, to navigate the riverbed and feel each step, to pick up our feet and float and release control of the moment, we are attempting to know ourselves amidst this constant flow of change.
To know ourselves completely is impossible.
However, to immerse ourselves in the pursuit of ourselves is essential.
If we are changing daily, hourly, moment by moment, we are already on our way to where we want to go. That dream, you are already achieving it, it’s already happening.
Consider for a moment how one goes about crossing a river: we see the destination, so we move upriver. We try to anticipate the flow and allow for plenty of time to cross and hit our destination. Each step, each stroke, each breath is a micro-adjustment in the right direction. Where we land is never certain, it’s never exact, the journey never goes as planned. It’s all an approximation. But we strive for a general direction amidst the flow.
Right now, we are experiencing micro-fluctuations that are broadcasting change within us. Every choice we make influences our own unique flow of change.
We are only ever transitioning from one existence to the next. Our transitions are not clear cut, we are multi-faced and multi-faceted. To allow space for this flow is to create ourselves anew every moment.
It’s not A then B. To oversimplify this process, it’s more like A then AA, then AAB, then ABB, then BB, then B. Then quickly, BB, BBC, and so on.
All our actions and hesitations and interactions and decisions affect our flow of change.
When we can feel the energy of the flow of change within us, when we are connected to the currents and depths and bends and forks, when we are aware of the fluctuations in temperature, when we understand the rise and fall, the seasons, all the outside forces affecting change, we begin to understand how we affect one another and the role we play in changing ourselves and each other.
Now consider your loved ones. They are rivers too.
How essential is this understanding of change for our kids? As parents, we want to help our kids embrace change, but too often we instill this concept of a final destination in them. We model stagnation, so they are destined to stagnate.
Kids, listen: everyone you see in this world is changing, no one is ever completely sure of where they stand. Confidence springs from our ability to embrace this flow of change.
Unless we help our kids understand that periods of doubt and uncertainty and fear are natural, that to feel different is ok, that to not know something of this world and of ourselves is essential, we lose our ability to change and grow.
The transitions from not knowing to knowing are where mystery lives, where curiosity is born, and where wonder takes hold. These transitions are where we test our mettle and where we rise to the challenge. These transitions are where we become what we’ve imagined.