What's Next?

What’s Next?

I did not enjoy 2019.  I was done!  I didn’t have a clue what 2020 held, all I knew was I didn’t want a repeat of 2019.

I was in the middle of the transition.

I was finishing the First Act of my life and moving to the Second Act of my life and I was mad as hell.

I was grieving, lamenting, and thinking, “What’s Next!” It better be better than this!

I wish as women we would talk more about the rage we feel as we begin to transition from the First Act to the Second Act.  It’s not all hormonal, something to get over medically.  There is serious work to be done in this wild transition of life.

Looking back 2019 was an amazing gift which has set in motion so many of the answers to the question, “What’s Next!”  There is a “What’s Next!”

If I had simply reduced that year to a conversation around hormones and wombs I would have missed the gift of the season.

Transitions are turbulent, wild, difficult rides but I believe they are  amazing gifts from God.  A way in which he ensures equity for his girls, freedom for his girls and a depth of living and loving. It’s a way in which he ensures our voice is heard and we say yes to who we really are.

As women, we can get lost.  We say yes to the lives of our children, our friends, our partners, our colleagues and many times say no to our own life.  We say no to our voice. We minimise our tone, our thoughts, our hopes and beliefs.  

Menopause begins to knock on the door and all of a sudden we find we don’t want to say yes to the things we’ve said yes to before. We no longer want to settle, put up with or cover over any longer.   We don’t want to tone down the unheard voice anymore. 

It’s not only in the transition between the first act and the second act where I see the  question, “What’s Next?”popping up.

This year I’ve walked beside some girls who are grieving lost relationships.  Relationships where they were deceived, betrayed, and manipulated.   Grief is knocking on their door.  As they cope with children, and finances and starting over I see this unanswered question, “What’s Next?”  Is there hope?

Will I get another chance?

Is there someone who will love me completely?

Do I have a purpose and a meaning again?

The question, “What’s next?” is a taunting question.

It’s so easy to be tempted by cynicism and despair.  We can  stroll through social media and see everyone else’s perfect life and find ourselves in the land of cynicism and despair.

I don’t know “What’s Next” for you but I do know you were meant to bloom.
Maybe for the blooming to happen some things need to die.
What's Next?

Things die in nature all the time and nature simply re creates itself.

This season may feel like there is no answer to the “What’s Next?” question.

But, if you allow the dying to happen you can and you will recreate yourself.  There is hope on the other side.

You were meant to bloom.

Hope invites us into a new way of being, seeing and living in the world and it is always there growing in the midst of the hard, the mess, the difficult, the confusing.  We just can’t see the seed, or the root because the grief or the hard is too dark.

But this is the gift of lament and grief.  It makes way for us to bloom, for hope to emerge.  This Christmas I simply want to encourage you to hang on.  Because hope springs up at the most unlikely of times, and in the most unlikely of places.

If you are after some resources here are some I have found helpful.

Jenna Riemersma has some amazing meditations to help guide you through lament, grief and a new future.  You can access them for free:  https://jennariemersma.com

The Seven Transforming Gifts of Menopause:  An Unexpected Spiritual Journey by Chery Bridges Johns  was amazingly helpful.

Love you dearly.  Sharon