“Nobody trips over mountains. It is the small pebble that causes you to stumble. Pass all the pebbles in your path and you will find you have crossed the mountain. The mind does not create what it perceives, any more than the eye creates the rose.”
~Ralph Waldo Emerson
The Ripple of Change
You were given a pebble. This pebble can represent anything you want it to. It could represent a time you made a huge life decision. It could be that you chose to experiment with things you have never tried before. Maybe you didn't even realize you were holding a pebble and you dropped it. Perhaps someone took your pebble and
tossed it for you. No matter in what scenario this pebble hit the water, it created a ripple effect, and from that moment your life changed. The water slowly dispenses, it's no longer going to be the same water you were just looking in, it rolls out into the depths, it rolls out in the shallow, it seeps down through stagnant phases, and washes away. Your pebble is laying beneath the surface. You might be able to see it, maybe you can't, but for whatever reason, we won't be picking it up.
The ripple effect in life is a lot like throwing a pebble. Once it is thrown, we cannot possibly go back to the way things were before. We don't have the ability to collect the water that once was touching our feet. Things change, and when we look at the surface of the water, we start to realize that our reflections have changed as well. The person that you see looking back has not only changed in their features, but internally there is difference. Those around you do not always recognize the change as something good, which leads to stones being cast. However, sometimes it is just misunderstood because we anchor our internal feelings and don't allow them to surface. We start to irrationally think and we start to feel as if our own worth is questionable.
You are emerging from these moments, where you have been casted to the depths, as a new person. This person has lived experiences and with those experiences we have to accept that we are not the same. The storms have come, the seasons have changed, new days have brought us tides that have brought to the shore things we have to accept as a new reality. We cannot possibly take back all the ways in which the water has changed us. We are learning who we are now as a person. Changing our friendships, relationships, our surroundings at times, in order to create a new pathway which will help us succeed and to keep picking up our pebbles. After we experience things, we have to be able to roll with the changing tides. This doesn't change the value of your pebble; it just changes the way in which you allow people to have access to it.
The biggest mistake we make when we start to collect ourselves again, is that we tend to want to find that person that was originally standing at the water's edge. We find ourselves chasing what we thought the image of our lives would be like, and sometimes
grief sets upon us. We experience things with our mental health that may need some guidance, or we work daily to remain in long term recovery. We feel the need to
apologize continuously or to seek approval because we are afraid to drop another pebble. We begin to ask "why" as if it will eliminate pre-conceived assumptions that we are doing it all wrong, that it will give us a clear path and bring us to the same page as everyone else, but the complexity isn't that simple.
When starting over, you most likely won't be handed a shiny new pebble, you'll be handed a rock that's a little rough around the edges. People tend to start off again rough around the edges, and as time passes become smoother. This is the part of the journey that allows you to form and shape into what you will become. Its becoming clear who you are after the ripple effect has taken place. Trauma, life experiences, loss, hurt, and pain will always take precedent in change. These experience that have made you, are the reason you are who you are today. Understandably, that sometimes is hard to accept, but the first thing to understand is, seeking someone who was before that time is not achievable. We must learn to become who we are in this version of ourselves.
Maybe you're wondering how to start going about the process of change after all of this. Seeking pathways to recovery, support groups, new friends, forming new relationships, and new places are all part of the process at times. Sometimes it's coming to terms with closure, and sometimes it's even allowing yourself to make the choice on purpose to throw a few more pebbles into the water. Either way, as you begin to make change, and you start to form your new pebble, life is about to show you how beautiful a transformation can be even when the depths of the water have been so cold. Continue to transform and know that no matter how many times you've dropped the pebble, you are still worthy of holding it.