The Transition Bridge

posted in: Preparation | 4


I don’t like transitions.  The past year or so of my life has been full of them; I am approaching the one year mark since I was finished at COS.  This year hasn’t made me like transitions any better.  Unfortunately for me, living overseas involves more transitions than average, so it would be beneficial for me to get better at them.


Transition was one of the topics that we covered in our training today.  We worked with this illustration of the transition bridge, describing various stages of a transition.  A couple of things stood out to me.  This is a normal process.  It is normal to feel anxiety and fear in the unsettling and chaos stages.  It is normal to long to feel settled again.  I am not alone.  And it is a process.  Things develop and change; they aren’t always the same.  That gives me hope that it won’t always be like this (whatever this is at the moment).


The children in our group also learned about this concept this morning, and they got to walk across a bridge fashioned out of chairs, off balance chairs, and large balls.  The adults came in and stood along the bridge to act as their supporters.  We held our hands out, so if they needed some extra support they could grab on to us.  The kids crossed the bridge in all sorts of ways.  Some practically ran through while others went slowly and deliberately.  Some walked and some crawled over the chaos balls.  Some needed support for almost every step and some didn’t want any support at all.  But almost all of them needed some kind of support, some sort of a helping hand. 


Standing there, helping the kids across was a vivid reminder to me of how important support is during times of transition.  Trying to walk this bridge alone is ill-advised.  I look back over the last year of my life, and I can identify a number of people who have supported me in specific ways.  They have provided listening ears, shoulders to cry on, housing, prayers, and love.  I wouldn’t have made it without them.  Now I am preparing to transition in a new way, where the possibility for chaos is even greater.  I am thankful for all of the people in my life—even more than in the previous year—who are and will support me in so many ways!  I could not make these transitions and live this life without you. 

4 Responses

  1. Tracey


    Keep looking for those hands! They will be there for you, in varied forms. Mine will be reaching out for yours.

    Stay strong.

    Peace to you, Sister,


  2. Go-With-God | REL2 in China

    […] It has such finality.  There’s so much longing and sadness.  And yet, it is inevitable.  We all say goodbye to people and places throughout our lives, in a multitude of ways.  We say goodbye to homes when we move from one to another.  We say goodbye to friends as they move away for grad school or a new job.  We say goodbye to loved ones in death.  All these goodbyes don’t seem to make saying goodbye again any easier.  They set off new waves of grief.  They are often the last step from unsettled into chaos in the transition bridge.    […]

Leave a Reply