One lovely October morning in 1819, I was rubbing tombstones at Campo Cesto when I heard a woman crying. It was Mary Shelly. Her son William had recently died and she, obviously, was overwhelmed. There was nothing I could do to console her save for hug her as she cried. Sharing grief helps the healing process.
Mary had recently published her story about Dr. Victor Frankenstein’s Creature who was so ugly that, after seeing his reflection in a pool of water, he understood why everyone rejected him. The pain filled him with hatred and he went on a killing spree. He even killed Dr. Frankenstein’s wife. Crushed by his wife’s death, Dr. Frankenstein said “Nothing is so painful to the human mind as a great and sudden change.” Of course the change he’d been subjected to was traumatic, extreme and unexpected. But not all change is negative.
Even if it sometimes seems monotonous, life is an unavoidable sequence of constant changes. As with Heraclitus’ panta rhei, from the outside the river seems static. But once you step inside of it, can feel the flow.
Aging is a change. And, like most changes, it requires reconfiguration. Because what once was is not always compatible with what is.
(from Cool Breeze, the Age of Reconfiguration ©)