A ‘sea change’ in the modern-day sense is where a person moves from a city or urban location to experience life in a more rural or seaside (hence the ‘sea’ change) location. People choose such a move for many reasons, perhaps because they become restless and crave a change in circumstance, perhaps they feel the pace of the city has become too much and want a simpler life, imagining a life by the sea or by a tree (hence the ‘tree-change’) will offer that simplicity.
I recently read an article in a magazine where the writer felt that her life was fine enough but humdrum: drive the children here, pick up the groceries there, watch telly at night and spend weekends making to-do lists on what needs to be done around the house but never actually doing it. And so she packed up and moved her family to a little island on the other side of the world.
On arrival the location was magical, picture postcard enchanting. Life was simpler, there were far fewer people, many more trees and lots and lots of sea.
But the writer was honest too. While her environment was gorgeous, she still found herself and her husband driving the children here, picking up the groceries there, watching telly at night and spending the weekends making to-do lists that never got done. She was still drooling over images of other people living in other parts of the world and still planning the next vacation or adventure, real or fantastical.
This article struck a chord with me, as while I haven’t made a sea change – I did move to a semi-rural area 2 years ago but that was more to do with logistics than seeking an escape. I have spent an enormous part of my life wishing for and planning holidays, some eventuated, but mostly never even taken. The grass was always greener somewhere else.
I don’t spend nearly as much time these days planning to be somewhere else, but occasionally do find myself trawling travel sites and house swap sites, imagining what it would be like to live ‘not here.’ Which is very interesting because my ‘here’ is absolutely beautiful – that most would consider the ‘greener somewhere else’ place.
What I have come to realise is that when feeling that restlessness that I need to get away, take a holiday or make a sea change, I am wanting to get away from myself. It is actually a disenchantment with my life because of the choices I have been making that I want to run away from. But you can’t run away from yourself and your choices. You can only deal with them (the consequences) and then make your future choices to be more in line with your truth.
Serge Benhayon is a fascinating philosopher who talks about these kinds of things all the time and I once remember hearing him presenting something like if we don’t like the way our relationship is, then don’t just blame the other person or the environment around you, change yourself and your approach in the relationship first and then review and see what happens.
I look at the concept of the sea change like this too – changing our environment in the hope of feeling more settlement with our life won’t work: change who we have become first, then see how life looks like then. Probably much cheaper that way too!
By Suzanne Anderssen