Come gather ’round people
Wherever you roam
And admit that the waters
Around you have grown
And accept it that soon
You’ll be drenched to the bone
If your time to you
Is worth savin’
Then you better start swimmin’
Or you’ll sink like a stone
For the times they are a-changin’. – Bob Dylan

i hate change. there aren’t enough words to explain how uncomfortable change makes me. and yet, change is constantly happening. good changes, bad changes, neutral changes. i hate them all.

“Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change.” – Mary Shelley

we navigate our way through the world in the safety of what we know … what we are used to … what is comfortable. the idea of something new and different is scary to us. we fear what we don’t know. we doubt ourselves and our abilities. in the midst of change, we forget that we always have options. we externalize our worth rather than looking within – we define ourselves by what job we have, how much money we make, what we own, and how we are seen. real change means accepting that who we are matters more than what we are. the truth is that we cling to what we know for fear of losing what we have; for fear of losing ourselves in what we don’t know.

there is one fact that we often forget: we take ourselves with us wherever we go. you can’t leave yourself behind no matter how many changes you make (or are forced into making).

“Come writers and critics
Who prophesize with your pen
And keep your eyes wide
The chance won’t come again
And don’t speak too soon
For the wheel’s still in spin
And there’s no tellin’ who
That it’s namin’
For the loser now
Will be later to win
For the times they are a-changin’” – Bob Dylan

change is discomfort. change is facing the unknown. sometimes facing your fears. this can be really scary, and it can also be really exciting. everything is in a constant state of change. nothing stagnates.

“Things change. And friends leave. Life doesn’t stop for anybody.” – Stephen Chbosky

life doesn’t stop. for anybody. for anything. the world turns whether we stand still and cry, or run around in circles screaming about the changes that we don’t want to happen. people grow, people change, people move on. and we have to keep living.

“Life is a series of natural and spontaneous changes. Don’t resist them; that only creates sorrow. Let reality be reality. Let things flow naturally forward in whatever way they like.” – Lao Tzu

the world is in a constant state of change. life is full of cycles, but things don’t cycle back in exactly the same way. the flowers come back after the winter, but they aren’t the same flowers. they are new flowers from the same bulbs.

“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed. And the only way that we can become exposed is if we throw ourselves out into the open. Do it. Throw yourself.” – C.JoyBell C.

throw yourself in … it is time to embrace change – as much as we drag our feet and stagnate in what we know, the world is in a constant state of change. it is the one thing that we can count on. the world would be boring without change. that doesn’t make me hate it any less. but i am willing to throw myself, to be open to possibilities that come with changes.

Come, mothers and fathers,
Throughout the land
And don’t criticize
What you can’t understand
Your sons and your daughters
Are beyond your command
Your old road is
Rapidly agin’
Please get out of the new one
If you can’t lend your hand
For the times they are a-changin’.- Bob Dylan

“Stepping onto a brand-new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation, which is not nurturing to the whole woman.” – Maya Angelou

sometimes staying in the position that we are in means staying in a situation that is not good for us. sometimes we think that we are happy because we have been here for so long that we think this is what happiness is. and then, surprisingly, things in the new place are better and we discover that the change was a good thing.

“You may feel very secure in the pond that you are in, but if you never venture out of it, you will never know that there is such a thing as an ocean, a sea.” – C.JoyBell C.

we get so used to what we know, that even when what we know is unhealthy we want to stay. you don’t know what is out there. you don’t know how good other people have it because we, you AND i, have been here in this place for so long. we call it home. we call it family. and family doesn’t stop being family just because you move away. we will always been family. this will always be a second home. and you are going to find joy in the new place with the new people and with children who WANT to learn.

The line, it is drawn
The curse, it is cast
The slow one now
Will later be fast
As the present now
Will later be past
The order is
Rapidly fadin’
And the first one now
Will later be last
For the times they are a-changin’.
– Bob Dylan

i hate change. and i am trying to embrace it. i am trying to get used to the idea of my friends leaving, of the furniture in my living room being rearranged, of driving a rental car instead of my own, of meeting with a new doctor today and another new doctor in a few weeks … i am trying to embrace the changes within my self. i am trying to get used to the idea of saying what i think, of expressing my feelings, of allowing myself to HAVE feelings, of allowing myself to FEEL those emotions, of standing up for myself …

change isn’t all bad. even the hard change has a purpose. and besides –

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed, citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” – Margaret Mead

Kira Dorothy is a Toronto-based Writer, Special Education Teacher, blog moderator for Sheena’s Place, Artist, and Advocate. Her work explores her passion for body politics, especially body image, body shame, body language, and self-acceptance, as well as Fibromyalgia, Mental Health, Chronic Illness, and stigma. Her goal is to fiercely explore experiences of eating disorders, body-shaming, and the pathologizing of body-size, and to share experiences of chronic illness and chronic pain. She strives to live her life through a lens of kindness and believes in the power of gratitude, patience, and self-compassion. Her own struggles, her love of writing, her passion for advocacy, and her dedication to ending stigma and misinformation is what drives her passion to be a part of this community.