because i’m not who i used to be.

a conversation i had with a friend nearly nine years ago came to mind the other night.  we were sitting on the couch the summer after i’d returned from my freshman year of college talking about whether or not we thought we had changed.  i recall myself trying to identify all the ways in which i hadn’t; all the ways in which i’d stayed the same.  i, perhaps defensively, assured myself and my friends that i was the exact person i was as when i left.

it’s silly to think of it now, but of course i had changed.  i had spent time with new people, lived in a shared room with someone i didn’t know, and gained a small sense of a larger worldwide perspective. i had tried new foods, used public transportation, and failed my first exam. i had traveled to two new states and observed more diversity than my hometown had to offer at that time. i knew it then and i know it now, i had changed.

interestingly,  i recently felt a similar tinge of pain after hearing someone say, ‘you’ve changed,’ and, ‘i remember when you used to be more sensitive.’ i’ve spent some time thinking about where that small knot that formed in my stomach came from as well as that tiny sting of guilt.  somewhere along the way, i learned to equate change with badness; with the idea that if i was different from who i am now, i would somehow be less than i used to be.  perhaps these associations come in knowing that discomfort, uncertainty, and challenges often accompany change or that it can often be difficult and unwanted.  but the truth is, i am less sensitive and my feelings do get hurt less often; not because my heart has hardened, but because my sense of self has strengthened.  i’ve gained confidence and an understanding that people’s actions and words are more often a reflection of themselves than they are of me.

and so in the last few days i’ve purposefully changed.  with some thought, i’ve realized that who i am now is not the same person that i was a minute ago or a few days ago. and who i am now is not the person that i’ll always want to be.  what i know is that from moment to moment, we can change parts of who we are.  like our attitude, behaviors, and goals. we can change the way we speak to and about others and the ways we respond to trying situations.  we can change our thoughts, the direction we are heading, and our dreams.  what i am learning is the only thing that keeps us from becoming someone new are the thoughts in our minds that tell us we must remain the same.  i believe  it’s worth being reminded that we often become so attached to  the role we’ve assigned ourselves we forget we are fluid and ever-changing.  and who we might be in this moment is only a fraction of the possibilities of the person we may become.

 

 

today, i am a person who hopes that i change.  a person who hopes that i am different than who i was yesterday; because yesterday i was impatient and quick to complain.  today, i will be a human becoming that is more understanding, in less of a hurry, and focused on the good. today there are parts of myself that i hope to change, parts that i hold on dearly to, and parts that i hope to continue to grown into 

 

 

and so this week, i hope you lose your sense of self and start anew.  i hope in the middle of a conversation or in the middle of a word, you change.  that you respond differently than the way you used to.  i hope you try to listen more or speak up when you feel uncomfortable.  i hope you start to transform yourself by observing your thoughts and the contant noise in your mind and by challenging yourself to slow down, focus on the present moment, and be more forgiving of the past. i hope you start to work out, continue your recovery, or begin that book.  and all of these words are not intended to say that change is simple or easy to endure, nor do they mean to suggest that making a permanent change will not be difficult; they are here to remind you that it is possible:  that you have changed, can change, and are changing. and while you are regularly transforming, i hope you practice being more loving to the person you are and the people you are surrounded by. through constant self-reflection and regular development, you can decide in this very moment who you will be and give yourself permission to let go of who you once were.

 

 

 

 

i hope you’re always in the process of finding yourself.

 

 

 

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15 thoughts on “because i’m not who i used to be.

  1. I have told friends that I have known for almost 50 years,after not having talked to them in the last 20 years that I have changed (due mainly to a memory loss). Then they tell me I am the same that, “other people” just wanted me to think I had changed! Don’t judge me by my past “I don’t live there anymore”.Needless to say they are no longer a part of my life. I have asked forgiveness from everyone I can think of so that I may forgiven my trespasses. I hold no grudges against anyone!! I have come a long way, with still a long way to go, I have The Lord on my side and I trust he will continue to help me do what is right and shun what is wrong!

  2. Hey Jess – thanks so much for another amazing blog, you are so generous finding the time to write here. I really appreciate it! :) It’s amazing, very time I read one of these they seem to align perfectly with what is happening in my life… I’ve just gone through some major changes, actually a complete lifestyle change, new city, new home, studying, new career path, leaving family behind again etc etc…It has been again one of the most challenging times in my life…along with having health issues to deal with…but I know that it is necessary change so that I can grow into the version of me that want to be.

    Sending love and light your way….Have a great day, week, month! :D

    xxoo Joey

  3. Such a beautiful blog post. Well-written, meaningful and relevant, as always. I’m constantly worried that I am changing but the people I want to remain in my life aren’t changing with me. What if I change to desire a different companion? Or if I change and my best friends no longer have the same interest that I do? Change is inevitable, like you said we are “fluid” beings but what if you flow into a different person that no longer fits with the people that you presently had?

  4. Such a beautiful blog post. Well-written, meaningful and relevant, as always. I’m constantly worried that I am changing but the people I want to remain in my life aren’t changing with me. What if I change to desire a different companion? Or if I change and my best friends no longer have the same interest that I do? Change is inevitable, like you said we are “fluid” beings but what if you flow into a different person that no longer fits with the people that you presently had in your life?

  5. We have to change. It’s important to change, to evolve, to learn new things and apply it to our lives. Life is a constant process of growth therefore of changing. If other people don’t like it then they need to change.
    One should always be more afraid of remaining the same than of changing. If one leaves this world the same he got in, it’s like he was never really born. He didn’t live.

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