No one really hates change. We may say we do, but the truth is, change is humanity’s hope for survival. If it wasn’t for our willingness to submit to evolution, the human race would face extinction. It’s because of change that we find happiness, life, and the things we desire deep inside of us. Our problem isn’t change. We crave change. We need change.
It’s the messy, awkward middle that we hate.
You see, we don’t have a problem with a girl turning into a woman. It’s the fluffy thirteen year old body with overactive pores and the emotional Turrets that we wish we could forget about.
Or when it comes to getting my dream hair color, it’s not the change of going from black to blonde that I despise. It’s the tangerine hair I get in the middle that sends me into panic mode and causes me to question my sanity.
Ask anyone, and you won’t find a soul who hates getting their body healthy and fit. It’s the weeks of eating right and working out only to have your muffin top smile up at you.
It’s not the change we hate, it’s the middle we want to avoid. So, how do we relate to this androgynous middle that’s neither black nor blonde? How do we keep ourselves from pulling the escape hatch too soon, and losing the thrill of transformation? How do we navigate through this unknown territory to make it to the other side?
I’ll tell you what I, sitting here with my tangerine hair, have been repeating to myself the past few days, and what every caterpillar whispers to herself, while wrapped in solitary confinement,
“Trust the process.”
Change is slow, growth is almost undetectable, but it’s in those moments of sameness that change happens. It’s in those in between places that prepare us for the end result, but if we can’t trust the awkward pace of the process, we miss out on happiness that can be found there. We miss out on life, and most often true change. That’s the paradox of change.
Three times now, I’ve tried a go at blonde hair. Just once in my life I want to experience the buttery brightness, but every time I see the flaming orange, I panic and go straight back to black — safe and easy, but this time I’m calming myself down, embracing the flame, and trusting in the process. I’ll get the hair color I want, but until then, I’ll wear lots of blues to compliment my hair. If I just enjoy the journey, I’ll be glad I took the time to get there.
You know, I wish I’d figured out how to trust the process sooner, because I would’ve enjoyed growing as a photographer so much more or found more joy as a new mother, but I’m not looking backward, just to the changes to come.
So, the next time you find yourself wanting to throw in the towel and punch change in the face, remind yourself to trust the process, trust the moment that you’re in, believe that you’re right where you need to be to get where you want to go.
Trust the process, because one day, when you spread your butterfly wings, you’ll be glad you did.