From Dr. Jane's Notebook
Family reorganization occurs whenever there is the loss or gain of a family member. A
new birth creates many new relationships and responsibilities. The exit of a family member
leaves holes in the family structure. Actually, any loss (for example, retirement, empty
nest, illness, etc.) creates a sense of emptiness. When this occurs, it is necessary to
reorganize and try to achieve a new sense of family balance.
The best way I know of to re-establish balance is to determine where the imbalance
exists. Here are a few thoughts on the matter...
- Life is a series of expansions and contractions. Our lives get fuller
at times, but emptier at other times. If your world seems too small, expand it with new
activities, people or pets. If your life is too complicated, determine the nature of the
overload and reduce it.
- People are a little bit like Trains! We require energy to move, and a
chartered course to end up where we want to be. Sometimes life is an uphill struggle,
sometimes its a downhill glide. But to keep the train moving at all requires proper
maintenance...keeping the train in good working order.
- To understand ourselves, we must understand our parents. To a large
extent, we have been programmed to replicate our parents' ways of being. The patterns of
their lives are deeply embedded in our unconscious minds and memories. When the people we
love are no longer alive, we are especially prone to be like them because this too fills
an emptiness in our lives.
- We are also a little bit like Plants! People change daily. We blossom,
we wilt, we crave sunshine, we grow, and when we lack the proper nutrients, we suffer.
Unlike plants however, we can choose how we will change. We decide whether its for the
better or the worse, whether today will be better than yesterday.
- Keep a list of Dreams. Boredom is a sign that its time to do something
else. There may be many things that you'd like to do in your life. Keep a list of those
dreams and one by one, give them consideration. Its also important to have back-up plans,
since things don't always turn out as we expect, but without that list of dreams, we may
begin to feel trapped in a dead end.
My Father recently expressed the desire to expand his life by finding a perfectly
trained five-year old male Golden Retriever to adopt. He and my Mom had never gotten over
the loss of their previous dog. When we experience loss, it is scary to make that
commitment again. But when "Sam", a perfectly trained five-year old male Golden
Retriever, arrived as my Father's birthday gift, it was not hard for them to make room in
their lives for this new special family member. The hard part lies in recognizing the
desire for change!
Special thanks to the good people of the Triad Golden Retriever Club "Dog Rescue
Program", who act as foster families for dogs like Sam.
ęCopyright, 1991, 1995, Jane R. Rosen-Grandon. All rights reserved.
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Last Updated November 14, 1998 by Gary M. Grandon,