Change is inevitable.

A shift in seasons comes slowly with the turn of the leaves. Before we know it, one last burst of color has given way to barren branches. This shed of leaves represents “the end” of autumn, “the beginning” of winter –a blank slate yet to be traveled.

For some, change may be unwelcome. However, they can still choose to trudge through the heavy snow and create new tracks. Soon, a familiar path is stomped out. The established route becomes a little easier, even if it is still quite slippery.

With spring, it would melt away completely. Blossoming buds and new life will wash away all that was endured over a cold and miserable winter, leaving an appreciation for a sweet reward that is sure to come with a change of season.

While change is inevitable, growth is a choice. We can either choose to embrace change and even seek it out, or we can accept only the familiar, wallow in our discomfort and eventually lose spirit.

Change is opportunity when you are willing to grow. Lately, I’ve been reflecting a lot on this thought. In over two years as the editor of the Aitkin Independent Age, and after all the seasons that were enjoyed or endured, its time for me to explore a different path. It was not a decision taken lightly.

 I can’t express how grateful I am for the opportunity to have taken on the role as editor in the community I love. This was never just a job; this was truly a passion. The staff at the Age were never just a number to me; our team was a family.

Along the way, I was lucky enough to meet and work among many of the kindest, most interesting and down-to-earth people who live in Aitkin County. In other cases, I had the chance to grow a thicker skin, gain self confidence and find my voice.

As of Friday, Oct. 18, I will no longer be “Brielle at the paper,” but that doesn’t mean you won’t still see me around. I hope to become involved in different ways throughout the community because it is a part of me now.

As editor, I did my best to tell the stories of the area through the eyes of its people. Now it’s time to go out and live the next chapter of my story. I wish nothing but the best to my team, and to all the members of the community. You are what made my experience at the paper enjoyable, and I will look back on all these memories with great fondness.

Brielle Bredsten is the editor of the Aitkin Independent Age.

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