I recently heard this statement while I was watching TV and it was said so vehemently that I had to chuckle. Of course we change! I am not the person I was when I was six years old nor I am the person I was when I was 36 years old. Hell, I’m not the same person I was yesterday. People evolve. Hopefully. There are a few Cro-Magnons amongst us. But I digress.
I’ve always believed that people change depending on their situation. There is work mode, friend mode and lover mode. And probably several in between. But we are constantly changing. Education, experience and trauma are just a few of the ways that we can change as people. When my life was changed by an incurable disease, I had to find a way to accept it. I had to change to accommodate all the paraphernalia that went with it. It is that adaptation that has allowed me to continue to be a viable person. Did I change? If I hadn’t, I wouldn’t be here. Change is inevitable and it should also be welcomed.
However, not all change is for the better. But that must also be embraced. We must find a way to live with the negativity or redirect it. These are easy words to say but so difficult to do. When my life was altered, it did not happen overnight. I was able to foresee what could happen. Of course, I did not believe it. They say to be forewarned is to be forearmed. I was. Mostly. I eventually allowed myself to become who I was meant to be under those circumstances. And I like who I became.
As a child I was afraid of everything, convinced I was an idiot. (The jury is still out on that.) I was also insatiably curious and trusting to a fault. I’m sometimes surprised that I made it to puberty. In my teens I developed ways to deal with my insecurities. I joined the drama department and became someone else when I needed to. Invaluable skills. In my 30s and 40s I perfected those skills and I became comfortable in my skin. But that shy child was always lurking in the background. As I have continued to age, I have discovered a person that I really like. She’s smart, she’s funny and she is fiercely loyal. I like her, I respect her and I enjoy her company. It took me a long time to accept who I am but I got there in the end. That wouldn’t have happened without a great deal of change.