Mari Katherine Raftopoulos: Just wait
February 24, 2010
Life is about waiting.
As much as it's about the pursuit, you can't get there until you wait. We move forward while we wait. And much like you wait in line at the grocery store, we wait our turn for the next stage in life.
This is the reason you should never wish time away. You will miss this wait when it is not present. Unfortunately, sometimes we don't have time to wait, and change comes suddenly without direction or guidance. And you find yourself saying, "Wait, wait for me!"
Oftentimes, we get impatient while waiting and forget to remember that it is part of the process. Trusting this process is half the battle.
People want results.
Not the process.
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Within this process is the substance that defines the result. It is the long hours, short weekends and low pay that make a promotion. It is the sweat, sprints and losses that make a win. And it is freedom, trials, mistakes, heartbreak and success that make life. Therefore, it is the wait that makes the result.
I have never been one to speak about patience because I am the type who always is on the go. And when something stalls me, like waiting, I try to search for something else to do so I feel like I still am moving forward. I have learned to value these times spent waiting. I have been waiting since September to get my ACL repaired.
While waiting until January for the surgery, I line danced, biked along the ocean and read. But still, I waited mentally for this change.
Waiting isn't so much about the physical stall in movement. It's about the mental wait. It's about knowing that your turn will come.
Wait five minutes. Hold on a second. Give me a moment.
What are you waiting for?
We wait for him to call back. We wait for the weekend to come. We wait for the results or for the letter in the mail that will determine our fate.
We wait for him to get down on one knee. Or we wait until we have enough money to get down on one knee. We wait nine months.
We wait for a new medical treatment or new medicine in hopes that it will improve our health.
We wait to grow up.
We wait to return.
And we wait to leave.
We are a multitasking, driven society, where waiting is seen as a digression as opposed to a progression. What are you waiting for, people might ask.
Everyone is trying to get ahead, so much so that they miss out on the observation. When you wait, you can reflect.
Even if you are the most impatient, multi-tasking, driven person, there is always something you are waiting for. I have found that the key is to find the balance between waiting and going. It is about knowing when to wait and when go.
As we left the hospital after my knee surgery, I said, "Dad, you know, life is about waiting." So stop twiddling your thumbs or tapping your foot, be calm in this lull in time.
And just wait.