Friday, August 23, 2013

Could you change your brand of toilet paper?

Last year I got tired of buying toilet paper all the time and hauling it around, so I checked out Amazon's 'Subscribe and Save' and discovered that not only could I have the UPS guy deliver it right to my front door, but I would also end up saving some money. They didn't have the type of toilet paper I was used to, but I went ahead and placed an order. When it showed up, I did NOT like it. At all.

The only problem was that I had forty-eight rolls of toilet paper. I was committed to this new stuff, whether I liked it or not.  Five months passed and the second shipment showed up. I didn't think a thing about it.

Five more months ... almost ... passed and I realized I wasn't going to make it until the next shipment arrived, so I purchased a four-pack from the grocery store. It was the stuff I'd always used up until my big decision to shop from Amazon. I couldn't believe it. Now I didn't like the old stuff.  The toilet paper I had been using for years and years was no longer my favorite. I couldn't wait to finish the package and get back to what I was now used to using.

As I thought about this, I giggled because first of all, I knew it would probably end up as a blog post. But secondly, it occurred to me that change isn't always about leaping into something new, it's about leaving behind something that we are comfortable with - that we are familiar with.

The 'old' may not be better than the new, but we hate the idea that change is involved.

It really bothers me to discover areas of my life where I am so averse to change. That's not the way I was raised.  Because my father was an itinerant United Methodist pastor, we moved pretty regularly. We packed up everything we owned, moved into a new community and a new house. We made new friends, got used to new shops, discovered new ways to get from our house to the schools and fell into new routines. It didn't occur to us to complain or whine about it because both Mom and Dad made sure that they expressed excitement over what was inevitable. They talked about how much fun we would have meeting new people. They always took a couple of road trips so we could see the new town and get excited about our new school and the new parsonage and the new church. They would pick out one thing or another that would be fun for us to know about our new home. Even packing up the house for a move became opportunities for them to encourage us to look forward to the new home. Mom would muse about how her furniture would look in the new place and get us involved in thinking about what we might do with our new room.

For us, moving and change meant that something exciting was in store for us.

I've changed colleges, jobs and homes several times throughout my life and have always approached them with a sense of joyous anticipation. When we closed our business, I looked forward to the next adventure. When I transferred from Asbury to Grand Canyon University, I could hardly wait to dive into a new program.

There is nothing I love more than changing my living space around. I don't do it as much any more because it seems that I have way too much stuff in my life, but one of these days I'll grow uncomfortable with my writing area and everything will be unplugged and pulled away from where it currently resides and shuffled to make a better work space. It happens every six months or so whether it needs to or not.  I really look forward to changing things.

Most things ... because when it comes to changing my brand of toilet paper, I guess I prefer the comfortable and familiar.

The funny thing is - it doesn't really take long for something new to be comfortable and familiar.

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