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  • Betty Girardeau


Transformation, or to transform is the result of changing something from what it was to something new. Our lives are so full of things that have been transformed that we probably take little time even thinking about this word and how it affects us in big and little ways 24/7 and 356 days a year. Maybe it's because I am getting older. Or maybe it's because of events like the death of a husband, several pandemic years, and now a war in Ukraine that has the potential of changing the world order, that I think about the power of transformation. A lot of things become transformed easily and without thought, like putting together diverse ingredients to make a cake, or the simple act of putting on a different set of clothes, or even less complicated, dusting a table top. Those are things over which we have some power in the transformative process. Others are caused by the unexpected, such as a virus or, much nicer, the changing of the seasons. Regardless, transformation is part of the fabric of who we are and how we deal with life and its promises and challenges. My husband was not a big fan of change. In fact, I think that at times it even seemed overwhelmingly challenging for him. Sadly, he was not unique, which is probably why for others the suicide rates have been escalating in recent years. I can't explain why I embrace change with its resulting transformation and others can't or don't. Yes, I am often frustrated and angry because what had been what I was used to is no longer the case. But I have found that eventually I can focus the anger on solutions and the frustrations on answers. That process is positively transformative for me. I have spent almost ten years spending hours looking through the lens of a camera, often taking the resulting shots and manipulating them in some way to express something different. I think when you see the world and your surroundings in such ways, along with looking back at your life and what your dreams and expectations used to be and now what you have become and could still become, you can understand the power, both positive and negative, of transforming. I don't want to come across as a "Pollyanna" (you younger readers may have to look up Pollyanna to understand), but I feel so blessed that my creative being has given me the power to find hope and even beauty in transformation. I know this is not a gift everyone has. If I can help them, I will surely try.

The accompanying image was taken several weeks ago after heavy rains flooded the ponds behind my house. I loved the reflections of the trees in the rippling flood waters.

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