I am not a patient person. I also am not an impatient person. I am, what I would describe as, an impatiently patient person.
There are times when I lose my patience. Recently, while driving to Ohio to meet a college friend for dinner and a concert, I found myself growing increasingly impatient with the traffic and construction that added time to my usually fast trip. Rationally, I knew that I would arrive at my destination with time to spare and that this certainly was not the worst thing that I have dealt with, but I still felt quite impatient and frustrated.
Then, there are times when I have demonstrated great patience. When my then husband and I decided to start a family, I assumed that very soon after retiring my birth control pills, I would be retiring to a rocking chair with a sweet baby to hold in my arms. I was wrong about the short timeframe, though. When we set off down the path to parenthood, we had no idea the twists, turns, and roadblocks we would face.
If you had told me everything that it would take to bring our first daughter into this world, I never would have believed you. When we first began infertility treatment, I could not imagine being one of those couples who undergoes round after round of treatment. Then, we became one of those couples.
What I thought would take a few months ended up taking 5 years. During that period, I underwent countless tests and procedures and endured enough injections to turn me into a human pin cushion. Plenty of times, I grew impatient with the whole process and my body, and with each negative pregnancy test, that impatience morphed into feelings of hopelessness. I began to question whether or not my dream of becoming a mom would ever become a reality, but something told me to be patient and to trust that a favorable outcome was on its way. That gut feeling eventually gave way to a pregnant belly.
Even after finally receiving the news of a positive pregnancy test, the waiting continued. My patience was extended throughout my pregnancy, as we prepared to welcome our first child. My daughter must have sensed that I was impatiently patient, because she decided to make her debut five weeks prior to her due date. My patience did not end with her birth, though, as I soon discovered that being a parent requires a whole new level of patience.
It still is difficult to wrap my head around everything that happened on the way to parenthood, but when I look at my daughter, I know that it was more than worth it. She was more than worth it. The best people and things in life are well worth the wait indeed. So, why do I often forget this in other situations?
You see, this trip down memory lane was prompted by a present day situation where someone has requested time and patience from yours truly. This request has left me impatient with both the situation itself and myself, at times. It is one that has gnawed away at my thoughts and weighed precariously on my heart, and while I am hopeful for a resolution, I have found myself feeling impatient awaiting its arrival. Today, though, began the shift from impatience to patience.
During my early morning workout, thoughts of the current situation were replaced by memories of my time in the infertility trenches. I have no idea why those memories resurfaced, but I am grateful that they did. Although the two situations are vastly different from one another, they do share some commonalities.
Both involve the pursuit of something my heart truly desires. Both involve circumstances beyond my control. Both involve people I genuinely love. Both involve my intuition. And both involve, or rather call for, patience.
As I compared and contrasted the two situations, I kept coming back to this notion of patience. Although I succumb to moments of impatience and doubt, I also trust myself to know if, and when, it is time to cut bait and if, and when, it is time to be patient. The situation at hand calls for patience, and that time is now.
While my preference would be to control the timing and outcome of pretty much any situation that comes my way, I know that this is simply not possible, and it is not always in my best interest. Although it is a harder concept to embrace when things are not going according to my plans, I truly believe that everything happens exactly how it should and at precisely the right time. In any given situation, there is only so much power I can exert, and then, I have to allow it to unfold, without trying to force, change, or control the process, even when, and especially when, I want to do the opposite.
In this situation, I will practice patience and await the outcome. That is a promise that I made to someone else and to myself, and I intend to keep it.
That’s another story . . .
Categories: That's Another Story