Remember having growing pains as a child? Mine usually happened in my legs, and even though the pain was uncomfortable, I told myself that it was worth it ~ because I was growing, and that was exciting!
Now as an adult, it's harder to recognize that the painful situations, relationships and events I have experienced are actually things causing me to grow.
When I am in the middle of a crisis, the easiest thing to do is start looking for an emergency exit & find the quickest way to escape. However, many times I have found no exit, no relief, and definitely no escape. Sometimes I am forced to endure emotional and/or physical pain, without understanding the reason why. It is ony after I have come through a situation that I begin to see the lesson I have learned, and the growth that has come out of it.
Growth can be on many different levels; emotional, physical, or even spiritual.
Many times I do not recognize the fact that I am growing until after I look back I see that I chose to react or respond in an entirely different way than I use to. I may not recognize my daily growth until I am once again challenged to see if I have indeed learned the necessary lesson at hand. I find it amazing that the chinese word for crisis is the same one as opportunity.
There is one thing I can say that I now recognize and that is that I realize I cannot change people, situations, or events. There are things that will happen to me beyond my control; however the one thing that IS within my power ( or control) is the ablility to choose how I react or respond to people, situations and unforseen events in my life. Now just because I recognize this fact doesn't mean that I always react or respond in the positive way I know I should, however, I am learning to accept responsibility for the choices I make.
I am recognizing that I don't have to respond from an emotional place; fear, anger, insecurity, etc. Unfortunately, sometimes I still do. But at least now I am recognizing the emotion that is fueling my response. For me that is a big Wow! It is one of my "adult growing pain" moments so to speak.
Recently I heard someone ask a group of people where they were in their growth. The choices were stuck, struggling or striding. I'm not sure if I can say that I'm "striding", however, I'm not exactly stuck either. I would say that there are areas in which I still struggle ~ but I am definitely "striving" to be better than I was last year. For me, that is growth. I am not where I want to be, but I am certainly not where I use to be either. I am going forward and growing, one step at a time.