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  • Writer's pictureLisa Cox

Time for Change

Why have I been putting off writing this post? Not because I don't have time! So much has been going on behind the scenes, writing required waiting. And now it's time for change.

When I was a little girl, I could not wait for warm summer days lying on my back in the field with a book in hand and the clouds to arouse imagination overhead, to flow into Back-to-School. That is not true, really. Sort of. Summer Sundays when I got old enough were spent on my dad's little riding tractor, mowing the lawn, then taking my weekly bath and sitting down with the family to watch Marlon Perkins's Wild Kingdom and The Wonderful World of Disney. It was a kid's dream. We had a garden, enjoyed harvesting and preserving for winter, and I even had my own little rock garden, which I tended daily with love and admiration.

But I loved school! I was going to be a teacher when I grew up! All that summer reading turned into formal education. I was painfully shy (I am not kidding!) and did not speak up in class- or on the bus, or in bus line (I can tell stories of how that painful shyness manifested, and maybe will sometime), but I LOVED to read and to learn! My teachers liked me because they saw this quiet curiosity. Even though the very first graded paper I ever got back said "FAIR" in red at the top, Mrs. Cyr gave me a chance to better myself. (I'm not sure I ever became better at following dot-to-dot pictures, squirrel or otherwise, but I was a good student overall.)

But I digress. I'm reminiscing. Why?

This time of year always brings the thrill of change that spurs me to excitement, and then by late October to melancholy. Cooler nights, the first blush of changing leaves, flowering plants fragrant as they ease into senescence under a hot sun, the increasingly frantic buzz of grasshoppers and crickets, the slow transition to back inside, highlighted by Back-to-School.

What does any of this have to do with shamanism? Now we get to the part about having to wait to write.

Yesterday a passerby whom I sincerely hope will stay in touch, stopped in on a Big Trip from California to Ohio, for a session. This young woman is making a huge transition in her life, and she now has the winged heels that she had left behind at some point on her journey in this world, to propel her lightly along. Today in a small drum circle a few of us students in the Change & Transformation Programme found that we are all- or at least many- realizing that the nature of what seemed to be a simple assignment has unfolded as more complex, for each one of us individually likely a lifelong, or certainly longer than this program will last, endeavor that not only manifests some change in this world, but in our own lives here.

My own project has a title now: Peace on the Plains. And I am realizing this project will require time, possibly a this-lifetime of time to complete. Or will I finish? Will it morph into an entirely different exercise, but with the same foundation and mission?

The quote, "What is it you plan to do with your wild and precious life?" by Mary Oliver, a quote in the signature of more than one of my friends' emails, comes to mind. Do you have a plan? Do we need a plan? Can we simply be and let this life unfold through a project- or not even? How fitting that so many of us are turned to a later page in the book and are asking these questions, taking these actions.

How fitting the entire poem, and so here it is. Enjoy for the first or the umpteenth time,

and be well.

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