Sunday, September 27, 2009


Nobody knows what we're really here for
Let's take it out hard till they show us the door
It's us against them tonight
- Bruce Hornsby, The Changes

This is one song that has been bouncing around in my head lately. Bruce Hornsby has been comforting music for me since I was young. Dad listened to his music, and after Dad died, his music really spoke to me, as did Bruce Hornsby. It's not many a celebrity that will correspond with high school girls in hand written form, and even fewer that will carry on full conversations with them, over multiple letters. Yes, this was before the prominence of the internet and email, and part of me longs for those days. There was more dialogue, and less one side discussion. I understand the irony of that statement on a blog, which next to commenting on news articles and the like may be one of the most common one-sided discussion formats currently available.

Autumn is here, and it's a season of changes. I feel those changes creeping in. The days are colder, the nights are longer, life in general is winding down and battening hatched for the winter ahead. I have my seasonal need to stock up and prepare; I think it's the prominence of the Black Squirrel in our town that highlights this need for me. Change is in the air.

At the same time, life aims at homeostasis. Homeostasis is the ability to maintain an internal equilibrium. Our bodies hold a consistent temperature, as adults we tend to maintain a certain amount of mass, our fluid levels try to stay near one point. All of this maintenance does not rule out change, in fact it requires change, it's a dynamic equilibrium. There is constant change that helps maintain homeostasis in the face of a changing environment. While it is equilibrium that is the driving force, it is the dynamic that keep us alive. And I feel that acutely right now.

The end result may be what keeps us trying, but it's the journey that really helps us to move ahead. An end is really just the carrot in front of our nose, right out of reach, that makes our run continue. When we meet one endpoint, we find a new one. When one goal is met, we move on to a bigger or different goal.

As a society, we try to maintain equilibrium as well, sometimes too much. If an equilibrium is too static, stagnation and disorder occur, because we're ignoring our changing environment or not adjusting to the new conditions. Whether it's a systemic infection because our body doesn't recognize an invader, or archaic laws and traditions that lead to internal strife and revolution, stagnation is detrimental. So there are those of us that fight for the changes that need to be made, even if inertia is against us. It's the fight that keeps us going, and when this fight is done, we'll find the next one. That fight might change drastically from the first, or be the next step, but it's a fight for equality none the less. Repeat the refrain.

Autumn isn't so much a season of endings, as a change in gears. A refocusing on the internal instead of the external. And so I now look forward to focusing inward, in preparation for some rest while the world continues outside, to emerge in the spring renewed and more able to focus outward. Can we as a society do the same?


  1. Great post, Lisa. I feel the same way this time of year. I think that's why I start craving pot pie when it's 95 degrees out. I want to start the hunkering down process. I imagine where you live the seasons are more definate.

  2. Lisa, this was a beautifully powerful post. And wouldn't you know it? I've been being visited by a black squirrel at my home as well. =)

    Changes have always scared me, but there are a few very large ones in my path. I'd better stand tall and learn to embrace them. =)

    I also wanted to thank you for the FABULOUS personalized invite (you know which one I'm talkin' about!)! I just wrote to Jaymee to thank her as well. The entire sentiment left me crying. I can't wait to join the group. =)