“We grow forward when the delights of growth and the anxieties of safety are greater than the anxieties of growth and the delights of safety.” ~ Abraham Maslow
Growth and safety are usually at odds with each other. During the earliest stages of a midlife divorce we crave safety above all else. We worry we can’t survive life on our own after the divorce. We are anxious about being alone and we fret about whether our children will still like us, or if we’ll ever have another companion to share life with.
Growth rarely happens in a cocoon of safety. All heroes have to step off the well-worn path to slay dragons, navigate through dark woods and risk life and limb in pursuit of their worthy cause. Growth will always be accompanied by some measure of anxiety. All adventure contains uncertainty, and a calling to do more than we ever expected of ourselves. It is not just unsettling; it makes us step out into downright horrifying, and yes, even dangerous territory.
Sometimes it feels as though we conquer one demon, just in time for another to show up. But no matter if we are bloody and bruised, we pull out our sword and fight on. Each morning we re-buckle our armor and encourage compatriots to join us, gaining courage and determination as we go. Somewhere along the way we become more than we ever thought possible …. not in spite of the journey, but because of it.
When you think about it, safety is pretty dull. Growth is adventure and it embraces the delights of living to the fullest. Our divorces yank us out of our safe existence and thrusts us into a wildly exciting adventure to claim our own bright future. It’s a magnificent treasure with our name on it. It’s been promised to us, so let’s go get it!
“Turn all your anxiety over to God because he cares for you.” ~ 1 Peter 5:7 (GWT)