Change: It’s a way of life but most people don’t like it. Personally I love it. I like being outside of my comfort zone, it makes me feel alive. The Parents on the other hand embrace routine, normality and the status quo (as in the current state of things, not the ageing rock band).
The Parents are from the ‘job for life’ generation, who purchased ‘forever homes.’ My dad worked for Pressed Steel, which ultimately became BMW, for over 30 years. He took early retirement, then went back a few years later to the same company as a consultant. My mum spent nearly 30 years working for the NHS. They’ve owned a total of three houses in their 43 years of marriages – their current one has been home for 25 years.
I on the other hand bought my first house at 21 and have since changed address so many times I’d need to use my fingers and toes to count them all up. Work is pretty much the same; to feed my need for variety I gave up my 13- year career with Nationwide Building Society and decided to go it alone to work on a freelance basis. The Parents thought I was mad giving up the ‘security’ and pension, I on the other hand knew I would go mad if I stayed there any longer. Nine years and a dozen contracts later I haven’t looked back. I haven’t even managed the commitment of marriage (although I did live with someone for nearly 10 years – go me!).
The move to Devon, and living next door to each other is without a doubt the biggest change each of us have made and already you can see how we’re each reacting to it differently. I’m at the ‘can’t sleep because my head is full of exciting ideas and possibilities’ stage but find the process of getting there a bit boring, while I know my mum is having sleepless nights worrying about the unknown, and what disasters those unknowns could bring. My dad on the other hand is quietly ebaying the odd item he knows he’s not going to need, while calmly getting on with life. None of us have started packing, but for me that’s not a problem as being a seasoned mover I know exactly how long it will take me to pack my life into boxes, and I know it will the impending deadline of the removers arriving to get me to do it. Shame I can’t say the same about The Parents who are avid fans of the ‘don’t throw that away, we might need it again at some stage’ school of thought – 43 years of that equates to a lot stuff… I fear their impending deadline may have already passed.
I may share their DNA but The Parents and me are very different people, with different views on what makes us smile. It’s going to be interesting to see how we all adapt to this life change. At the very least I predict a few more grey hairs for us all (a change I won’t be embracing), and several disagreements!
This article offers some good tips for on dealing with change: