The overarching theme of Life is beginning and ending. We are born and then we die and in between these two points exists a series of endless beginnings and endings, whether it be relationships, situations, places we visit, emotions, conversations, illness and the list goes on. How well we move through (or even notice), beginnings and endings in our life is dependent on our own earlier experiences within our family on how we begin and end things.
If we look closely we will find that beginnings and endings have a lot in common: they are times of transition, uncertainty, sometimes chaos and other times excitement. You cannot have one without the other. They can evoke strong emotions such as anxiety, rejection, curiosity, excitement, anticipation, fear, sometimes anger and loss or even apathy. Above all the way we have experienced beginnings and endings earlier in our lives will profoundly influence the way we anticipate and experience them now!
Lets start with beginnings!
I invite you to spend some time noticing how you do beginnings as this can tell you a lot about yourself and the way you choose to live your life. For instance, are you the type of person that is excited by the new, rushes in without discernment moving so fast that by the time your psyche has caught up with you, you are in too deep? Does life become a blur where you are just jumping in and out of the old and the new, bewildered by your own speed you ask yourself “How did I get here?” Or do you begin something due to an inward or outward expectation that pressures you to start something you are not yet sure you want to? Are you tentative, shy and reserved about beginnings, preferring to stay with the familiar longer than is perhaps beneficial to you?
What in your life is ending?
How much you valued what is coming to an end and what you are left with will have a profound effect on your response to that ending. There is no doubt that endings in which you have chosen are far easier to deal with than endings you haven’t. Unexpected endings are often filled with anguish, denial, confusion and pain. They mark a time of deep sadness, shock, loss, rejection, anger, fear and dread for what is next. Whilst an expectant ending can be filled with relief, jubilation, excitement, curiosity and pride in the completion “I did it!”
Beginnings and endings are a time of transition where we are invited to step out of our comfort zone and into the unknown over and over again. Life is constantly in a state of flux where possibilities are endless and nothing stays the same. We exist in the ebb and flow of beginnings and endings, endings and beginnings requiring us to be flexible, resilient, discerning and open to learning about ourselves, others and how we all do our best to live within this constant state of impermanence and change. Life lived well requires us to pay regard to our beginnings and endings allowing us the sharpness of awareness and clarity to feel into whatever arises and to notice what we are doing, how we are doing it and when it is time to let go and begin again, begin again and let go!