Nov 11, 2012

Things Change by Prof Gerald August

How do we handle change? Things don't always remain the same. And that can produce confusion, pain and debilitation. But we must face the change, sometimes quickly.

An example is Vivian, who is a lovely woman with a good mind and heart. After college, she worked in the brokerage industry on Wall Street. Three years later, she got married and had two boys. She was a full time mother, and her husband made a good living. She enjoyed this life for eighteen years.

But then her husband divorced her and married a woman he worked with. Vivian had to face this shocking change to her -natural- order. Now on her own, with a sixteen year old and a twelve year old, she needed to go to work. But how would she manage raising the boys? A new reality was unavoidable.

The first summer Vivian was divorced, she took a full time job. But she saw how chaotic and disrespectful her two sons became because of her absence from the house during her working hours. She also wasn't fond of the so-called friends her sons had. This forced her to do something neither of her sons could believe. She quit a very good paying job to stay home and police the two of them the rest of the summer. But she wanted to make sure they took the right fork in the road of life.

That fall, she got a job with the Board of Education so her hours would correspond with the time the boys were in school. This allowed her to be a caring and nurturing mother, along with her new role as disciplinarian. Today her sons are strong, independent and successful men, who credit their success to their mother.

This year, Vivian was given the most prestigious award granted by the PTA of her school district, its Lifetime Membership Award. In a public ceremony, she was honored for her contributions to the welfare of children and youth, and her priceless guidance and support through numerous situations.

Her story is a paradigm of the many stories where an intense emotional rupture took place, and of the many people who adapted, grew and thrived.

This post is a recognition and tribute to all those who faced forced change and heroically prevailed.

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