Becky Elsbernd

Life is full of transitions. Some we plan for with anticipation, such as graduation, marriage or parenthood. And others are unexpected, like the loss of a loved one, medical diagnosis, or the end of a relationship. I love the quote, “If change is the only constant in life, then let’s get better at it.” Our human tendency is to want things to stay the same, but it’s evident that God has a different plan. Nothing in nature stays the same. For example, the seasons in the Midwest change quarterly and the weather seems to change by the minute. 

Recently, I had the unique opportunity to step away from my everyday life to go on a Life Transition Walk, a 25-mile walk over three days on the Root River Trail from Whalen, MN to Houston, MN. It is one of the many themed long-distance walks offered through Walking Space, to give people time, place, and pace to foster personal growth, healing and inspired action. 

Here are a few things I learned about transitions on my walk. 

·         I must slow down and take one step at a time.

·         Support and encouragement from others is essential.

·         Be aware and grateful for the beauty that surrounds me.

·         Grief is a part of transition. Take time to be alone to acknowledge my  feelings and express them.

·         I never walk alone. A stranger is only one conversation away from being a friend and God’s presence is with me always not just when I feel it.   

·         Respect my limitations. No one is superhuman. Be honest about my needs and listen to my body. 

Immersed in nature and living in close quarters on the bus bunk, I leaned into the discomfort of newness and found new confidence in myself and my ability to accept change as an essential part of life. I pray you are all kind to yourselves as you go through your varied life transitions at this time. Let me know if you want to talk, better yet if you want to talk and walk. To find out more about Walking Space go to https://www.walkingspace.org/.

– Becky Elsbernd / Parish Nurse