Grace Notes: Patience

Image via Christian Schloe

I am a decidedly impatient person.

I want to see results now.

As in, like, yesterday.

As a kid, I was the type to search the house for wherever my parents hid my Christmas gifts to see if there were any clues as to what I was getting. I was also a box shaker.

I could hardly wait for Halloween, or the Tooth Fairy’s visit, or Easter, or summer break. I was always vaulting myself into the future where I’d have the answers or at least a clue to what the answer might be. In my mind, I flew over wherever I wanted to go, ready to land, even if no airstrip was in sight.

My impatience can sometimes make me a real pain in the ass.

At others, it can signal passion, excitement, a sense of adventure.

I want to be ‘off’.

I want to hit the road.

I want to write the end of the book before I choose the topic. I want to be at the vanguard, the fray, the edge, the top.

And there are good things about my ambition, my impatience, my unwillingness to ‘suffer fools gladly’ as they say.


But there’s also a dark side.

These days, more often than I would like, I lose patience with my mom – who is, by the way, 81. She has a tendency to be a tad irritating at times, mostly because she is complaining (like I am doing here).

She’s very opinionated and obstinate, and so am I. (Birds of a feather.)

I had to remind myself again today to have more patience with her and to stop expecting her to change. She’s an octogenarian.

She is the only person she is likely to be at this point.

I am not going to change her views on anything.

So, getting exasperated with her, or losing my sh*t (and my cool) is pointless.

Note to self: If something works, do it. If it doesn’t, stop.

My impatience with the foibles and shortcomings of others is completely pointless.

I need to accept my mom.

As she is.

I need to accept her wisdom and grace. I need to accept that she will sometimes stand on my last nerve, but that doesn’t mean I don’t love her and she doesn’t love me.

She infuriates and illuminates and inspires like pretty much everyone else on the surface of this planet right now.

It isn’t easy for her, living with me.

Of that, I am certain. I am hermetic more often than not. I prefer sitting in my office writing, or sitting outside writing, or working on plans for what I might write. You get the idea. Not exactly a funhouse atmosphere.

Although in lots of ways it is ideal – living here in a beautiful, artistic small town – I have to remember that Mom gave up all her independence and her friends when she moved in with me.

And she’s used to being around more people. So, we need to work on that.

I recognize how that must be a raw ache for her, even two years later.


Be patient with life and those you love.

Be patient.

Slow down and take a breath.

You’ll get there. You will. The route may a tad longer than you planned, but you’ll learn something new along the way. 

© 2016  Shavawn M. Berry All rights reserved

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