Spring has sprung,
the grass is riz,
I wonder where the birdies is?
I can tell you exactly where the birdies is at 4am! They are outside my window, singing for all they are worth! The nights are getting shorter and the days longer and we are seeing the sunshine a lot more. It’s full of hope, is spring. Full of the promise of summer.
One of the big happenings of spring is the weekend in October when we put our clocks forward by an hour. Every year I find it amazing what a difference one short hour makes. There is a big difference between 7am (get out of bed time) and 8am (go to work time). If I am still in bed at 8am the day after the change it feels like an awesome sleep in, even if a short 24 hours ago, before we put our clocks forward, that same time of day would have been considered an early morning for the weekend.
And at night. The night before changing the clock, at about 9pm I was considering going to bed. ‘A nice early night’ I thought. And then I moved the clocks forwards and it wasn’t an early night at all any more. One hour can make a huge difference. Not to mention the change in meal times from the perspective of little children!
The week before daylight savings start this year I thought that I was all ready for the change. I had started waking early already, no help needed from the alarm clock. And I had therefore started going to bed early too. Foolishly I thought that I had pre-adjusted and that the change of the clock would make no difference. But that was not the case. Just like every year before, it took me about a week to adjust. A week of feeling slightly slow, and slightly dopey. Of feeling hungry at the wrong times and sleepy at the wrong times. A week of too much coffee. A week of adjustment.
Now, of course, we are all adjusted and the new time feels normal. But there was still a time of adjustment to be gone through.
Some changes in our lives can seem to be small from the outside but can have a massive effect on our lives as we go through them. Other people might not see that the change is big for us and might not understand why it is taking so much effort to get through. You, yourself, might look at a small change about to happen in your life and not worry about it, not even prepare for it. ‘It won’t be that big’ you think, ‘I can cope with a little thing like that!’
But when it actually happens, when the change comes about, it can have a big effect- just as I looked at the change to daylight savings and thought ‘no biggie’ but when going through it was affected by it as much as I ever am. And it is easy to beat yourself up about it – ‘why am I not coping with this? It’s such a small change.’ but please, don’t. And whatever you do, don’t beat up on someone else going through their own uncomfortable times. Sometimes small changes are actually big changes when you are inside them.
Life requires change, we cannot grow without change. Pools of water become stagnant without change, and our lives also become stagnant if we force them to stay comfortable.
We need to embrace the uncomfortable and move just a little out of our comfort zone and be prepared for the change and the effect of the changes on us.
And change (even if it’s uncomfortable for a time) can be very good. I think the daylight savings change is a good one. It’s a joy to have the lovely long light evenings of summer. It’s a joy to be woken up by the sunrise at a reasonable time. The adjustment is worth it in the long run.
Be prepared for change – it’s part of growth. Don’t beat yourself up when even the smallest change in your life requires a season of adjustment. And remember, as it says in the Good Book: God works all things together for the good of those who love him.
Ruth Amos is a chemistry researcher and lecturer, a maths tutor and a mother of two fairly grown up kids. She is also experimenting with writing in her small amount of spare time. You can read her blog at aquietlifeblog.wordpress.com