Change – the pace of change is real!
None of us could have planned for COVID, protests, economic challenges, job loss, and alteration in services for our families. I know Mikelle, and I never thought we would be social distancing. Our focus has always been being active in our community.
Mikelle and I have developed pretty good skills for both anticipating and dealing with unpredictable situations. Our ability to be flexible and adaptable is almost cat-like. Cultivating this ability prepared us for the unexpected, which is the time we live in now. Every day presents new challenges.
Mikelle and I, like you, are experts in change. Just the changes Mikelle experiences in her body every day make it so. Plus, we had a fair number of changes in the people who came in and out of our lives since Mikelle transitioned from school to adulthood.
We have developed a few valuable power strategies we’d like to share with you.
Know the Difference between Planning and Preparing.
What could you do in this immediate situation?
Being prepared is more about being creative than having a plan. Planning assumes life will go as you thought it would, rather than it actually does. We access our current resources, look for some that we may not have considered, and then link them in creative and inventive ways.
If you are lucky, you might be one of those rare people whose creativity meets their healthy analytic perspective and come up with multiple plans, which, in reality, is being prepared. Plan B. can replace Plan A If that fails, you have Plan C or D. The key is to have options.
Preparedness allows for quick thinking. Immediately, we can engage the energy of the moment to focus clearly on the desired outcome. Questions like, “What do I need?” “Who do I need?” “What resources can help me right now? Whatever comes up, you have what you need. These questions unlock action. We believe an action plan is a critical part of both preparation and planning.
Developing Flexibility and Adaptability
Between the fear of losing a job and educating our kids at home, a virus that seems to multiply by the minute across the country, we can find ourselves feeling stuck, rigid, and even paralyzed by the unknown.
Fear can cripple more than any disability.
Like you, becoming a parent of a child with special needs, fear gripped me in the middle of the night as I held my sleeping infant. Back then, I wondered if I had what it would take to give Mikelle what she needed to live a rich and meaningful life despite her physical limitations.
Letting go of what was and being open to what will be can help us loosen fear’s grip.
Mikelle and I are gradually letting go of what we have known and trusted, like our community, coffee shops, and safety notions.
We are becoming more flexible. We are stretching our brains and loosening up our creativity.
In other words, we are focusing on becoming more responsAble as we set off on our new journey into a changing world.
This challenge is helping us stare down the meaning of life to see its value. Change has taken us places we didn’t think we wanted to go—and we ended up falling in love where we have been and will be as we continue to perfect our responsAblities.