Saturday, October 01, 2016

How Do We Wait? - Eleanor Shepherd

           Her visit to the midwife was Tuesday and the birth of our second granddaughter seemed to be imminent. All week I have been pouncing on the phone at the first ring, ready to head over to her house for the big event. But she has not called and by evening, when I can stand the suspense no longer, I have to call my daughter, just to make sure I did not miss her call. Highly unlikely!

If I think I am tired of waiting, I cannot imagine how it must be for Elizabeth, who is carrying around this huge weight and not able to get comfortable sitting, standing or lying down. I would like to think that some of my impatience is related to her wellbeing. I try to think of something that I could do to make things easier for her, but it seems there is little comfort I can offer.  

            I have never been good at waiting, but I notice that with age, I am worse than ever. I must fill every moment with activity rather than quietly wait for some action to happen. It is so bad that I even try to find something to do when the wheel on my computer begins to spin, because I cannot stand waiting until it finishes rolling around. Sometimes I will keep my iPad open beside the computer and will check my emails on that while the computer is opening another application. Is it the craziness of our instant age or is it just me?

            These days I seem to have a lot more doctor’s appointments than I ever had before.  I have concluded that comes with aging. I am grateful that I have my Kindle, my Kobo and my iBook Apps on my iPhone, so at least I have a variety of things to read while I wait for appointments. I am fine as long as I remember to check that I have my reading glasses in my purse.

            When we were young our impatience was related to exciting events, like a birthdays or Christmas or school holidays. Now the things we wait for are more likely to be test results or news from family and friends or perhaps our favourite television program or a call from the library telling the book we requested is in.

            Birthdays can remind us that we have many more behind us than ahead of us. Christmas brings memories that are not always positive and sometimes reminders of those who are no longer sitting around the tree with us. Once we retire, those who have not yet entered that state assume that life is constant holidays. Perhaps we have grown tired of waiting and found that what we wait for does not live up to our expectations.

 My conclusion is that we need to keep a perspective on waiting, in order to choose to enjoy the waiting times and the rewards they still bring. I know that when the time is right, my new grandchild will arrive and I will be able to hold her in my arms and rediscover again the joy of her coming. I can look around me as I wait and appreciate all the good things that I have to enjoy. I can anticipate that one day I will pass into the Eternal Now and there will be no more waiting and I will be satisfied with everything I need and want forever. In the meantime, why not enjoy the journey?  

Word Guild Award
Word Guild Award

Eleanor Shepherd, a Salvation Army officer has a repertoire of over 90 articles published in several countries. A speaker at conferences, in Canada, the USA, France, Belgium, Switzerland, South Africa, Australia, Haiti and Jamaica, her story appeared in Hot Apple Cider. Her book More Questions than Answers, explains her style of evangelism by listening.  


Peter Black said...

Eleanor, you drew me into a place in which I gained something of a feel for the emotions and eager impatience of a grandma's 'expectancy.'
Your mother's heart shines here in your concern for your daughter's comfort and wellbeing. And yes, our time of waiting will give way to the eternal present with satisfaction and fulfilled joy. ~~+~~

Glynis said...

Oh I can so relate to the 'waiting' syndrome. Well said, Eleanor. I remember when I could hardly wait to be 18!
Such good truths - and here's hoping that your lovely daughter is now happily cradling her new little one in her arms by now. Sweet blessings on your waiting.

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