The hidden costs of navigating a life transition
Updated: Nov 3
At this point, I feel like the queen of transition because of all the changes I have experienced over the last 3-5 years. However, this last transition has taught me that I can kick and scream throughout or I can accept the process of transition. It dawned on me that the reason I don’t like life transitions is that somewhere along the way, I told myself the lie that “I can’t handle change”. However the reality is that I have navigated and survived 100% of my life transitions. I mean this year alone, I have navigated about 3-4 transitions😅. So my new philosophy is that I can simply embrace change no matter how uncomfortable it feels especially because I have God holding my hand throughout the process. Although I can’t predict what will happen, how it will feel, what to expect, or how to prepare, I can do my best to be present, lean on my support systems, and cast my cares on God.
So as I prepare for yet another life transition in this same year of our lord 2023 😂, I wanted to share what I’ve learned along the way about some of the hidden costs of life transitions. Whether you’re about to get married (aka about to live with a boy), or you just got a new job in a new industry, or are a new mom/dad, or you’re getting into your 1st healthy relationship, or going back to school whatever it is, hopefully, this list will help you, like it’s helped me. I should also say 1 more thing before we get to the list, life transitions don’t always have to look like your circumstances are changing. It can also look like your mindset is shifting, or that you are letting go of unhealthy thought processes and coming into new healing. Ok now for the list;
You’re not going to feel like yourself - when you are about to step into something new, what you know about yourself will change, how you “identify” yourself will change, grieve the “old you”. Spend time appreciating the person you were, what you loved about that person, and the fun you had, and then start building the new you. If you were a Manager at a large corporation and you identified with your job title and now you no longer have that job, it’s ok…. you are not your job title, you are a human being. It will take time, but don’t deny how you feel, don’t pretend like you are fine even if you transition into something better. Figure out what the new you is AND if you are Christian spend time in the bible, and God will tell you who you are.
It will somehow be VERY loud and also EXTREMELY quiet at the same time. In the age of smart algorithms, when you are making a life transition instagram and TikTok will know. Friends have told me that Instagram knew they were pregnant before some of their friends knew because of all the pregnancy content they received. There will be ALOT of content trying to speak into your life. At first, it will be helpful because you will be learning about the new thing you are stepping into, and at some point it's going to get confusing. Find your north star; for me that’s Jesus. At some point, I had to shut off all the well-meaning voices and just listen to my spirit while asking for wisdom and guidance. The second side of that coin is quiet and isolation. I’ve heard this from new moms about how the silence is deafening once the baby shower is over and the initial visits happen. When you’re infant has woken up for the 6th time and you’re running on 30 mins of sleep and you’re wondering if anyone can hear or see you. Or when you finally quit the job and people are congratulating you but you don’t know what comes next? That isolation can feel very lonely but guess what God says he will never leave you or forsake you! He also says in Psalm 32:8 - I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you with my eye upon you. Try to remember that AND also reach out to your community or talk to a therapist.
There will be a lot waiting and doubt (it's part of the process). I feel like I have talked about waiting so many times on this blog because it's honestly just a necessary part of the process of transition. A lot of us think we are patient but we aren't. We pray for patience but we really are not ready for patience. To be patient is to be frustrated, uncomfortable, and uncertain. There is a reason patience is a fruit of the spirit because it literally takes the holy spirit to be patient. Can you imagine, trying to make changes but it’s not working, or you can’t control one half of the equation and well-meaning people try to give you advice, it's incredibly uncomfortable. I mean how many single people have been told “It will happen when you least expect it?” that shit is frustrating to hear for someone who has been waiting patiently for their spouse…..side note, Jesus was single his whole life and still reached purpose, so who am I to say, I can’t walk in my purpose until I’m married? Idk where that theology came from but BE free sis, go after what God has for you, and keep praying for that spouse (2 things can be true). Anyway back to what I was saying, you will feel doubtful that it will come. Doubt about whether or not you can make it in one piece, or that you are prepared for the transition. Let me save you the stress and tell you that you can never be fully prepared(hopefully that’s freeing). When you start experiencing doubt about your transition, that is your sign to get off social media. Don’t stay there because you will start to compare yourself and nothing great comes from it. Get off social media and get into your journal and your community, and let God affirm you!
There will be rejection (perceived and real rejection alike) Now this one sucks! As someone who has had issues with rejection and abandonment, this was a hard one to embrace. All of a sudden you will start to internalize rejection that has nothing to do with you. Are you applying to new jobs? Rejection, You’re trying to date healthily? Rejection, You’re trying to change your mindset? Your friends might reject your ideas, You’re trying to go back to school? You might not get into the program you want. The moment you realize that rejection is part of the process, the sooner you can get over it. I have learned to re-frame rejection for this reason. For me, I truly know now that rejection is protection. There is too much evidence in my life of times where I was rejected and it turned out better for me. I remember a few years ago begging God for this job with this company and someone else got it and 6 months later the manager was fired for sexual assault 😳...... Does that mean that I still don’t experience the emotions of rejection? No, it just means that I feel my feelings and then trust God to turn it around. Please for the LOVE OF ALL THINGS GOOD AND GREEN on this earth, do not repress your emotions when you are going through a transition. Especially if it's rejection you are feeling. If you don’t feel your emotions, it can lead to resentment of the process and that can cause you to pause the transition pre-maturely which can lead to regret. Please feel your feelings in a safe space aka therapy or with a trusted friend.
There might be spiritual warfare - if you don’t know what I’m talking about, spiritual warfare is like Murphy’s law which says that anything that can go wrong will go wrong. It will feel bizarre in this season. Things that you know you are solid in will just start to crumble out of nowhere. Suddenly you’re missing appointments, normal processes like cooking become more convoluted, and weird things start happening. Weird things like getting a call from an ex asking for a second chance and walking into a glass door and bruising your sternum in the same week…..lol that’s oddly specific Ibiyemi (this may or may not have happened to me😂😂). I don’t want to go into too many details with this one BUT I will say “Take note”. These things aren’t just a series of random, unfortunate events. Pray and fast through it and get your community praying for you. Remember you have already won the battle, the enemy is just trying to rattle you, and as annoying and frustrating as it can be, don’t lose sight of the goal. In fact, if these things increase, you can take it as a sign that you are truly on to a breakthrough.
Lastly, life still happens even if you are in transition! There will be birthdays, weddings, movie nights, brunch dates, sushi with a cute man 😉, dishes, laundry, weight gain, weight loss, amazon packages to be picked up, and clients to follow up on. ALL the things don’t stop. Just because it feels like your whole world is changing, don’t forget to embrace JOY! You only have one life to live and you can’t get stuck or try to “wait out the transition” because if you’re like me you will be going through multiple transitions a year.
I wanna end this blog with a poem; Well a collection of words that blessed me as I was praying/spending time with God.
The wilderness is about identity
The wilderness is about intimacy with God
The wilderness is about preparation
The wilderness comes before the promised land
The wilderness can be isolating BUT you are not alone because God is with you
The wilderness can be full of friction and discomfort, Obey anyways
The wilderness can be frustrating BUT is it also refining
When you enter the new season, don’t forget to grieve the old one, write the obituary, bury it, and then move on. Unless a seed falls into the ground and dies it cannot bear much fruit.
Happy transitioning y’all!
On another note, I can’t wait to share my last and final transition of the year; and it's a BIG one so stay tuned or else you are in my daily life then you most likely already know.
Till next time;
Your transition queen,