On Waiting

The worst part about having something to look forward to is how long you have to wait for it.

Count the days a thousand times, divide it into multiples of five and ten, calculate the weeks, number the Mondays…it doesn’t matter. No matter how you dice it, you have to live every day in between, and nothing can make a day shorter.

We wait so much we have entire rooms for it in hospitals and airports. We despise it but we do it all the time. How many hours have I spent in a line?

The months ahead seem unbearable, but I can always manage ten more minutes, and then ten more. Things are only boring, or painful, or long, or terrible when I admit that they are. Complaining, swearing, crying. They’re all cathartic, but only temporarily. It would be better if the day to day wasn’t so bad…then again, it probably isn’t.

Ah. Always waiting. I’ve recently gotten into Fullmetal Alchemist, and one of the main characters’ friends asked if there was anything she could do to help, besides wait for them to need her. Well…no. Sometimes the best thing to do is wait. Sometimes, it’s the only thing to do.

Maybe this is just me, being an introvert and not wanting to bother other people with my troubles. My introversion is certainly why I avoid confrontation, perhaps it’s making me avoid comfort, as well. Waiting isn’t so bad when there’s someone to talk to.

Whatever the cause may be, I’ve realized that I’ve got to stop living for the future, for some pre-determined event, and focus on the present. To live mindfully, even if being mindful hurts sometimes.

It’s a little change, but I’ve taken to crossing off the date on the calendar at the end of the day instead of the beginning, as if to tell myself: the day has just begun. The next step is turning that phrase into a positive thing.

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7 thoughts on “On Waiting

  1. Excellent piece – waiting is a huge thing for me these days as I wait to see my partner after long absences. I find it helpful to slow down sometimes and steal moments to just look at the things around me. I’m in a new city with so many things that are entirely novel and if I don’t stop to look at them, I’d never know they were there! I think this can be said for people who have lived in the same city for their entire lives – there is something new around every corner. Some small adventure or excitement, something to write down or sketch out on paper so that at the end of the day when it’s dark an we feel the most lonely, we have vivid daily memories of that cool thing we saw or did.

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  2. I keep saying I will live in the present, sometimes I succeed, sometimes I don’t. But I never give up trying! 😊

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love the last paragraph, great sentiment! I feel like I’m stuck waiting for this school year to end because I’m looking forward to next year so much. I get to take a break from teaching and move across the country, but I’m forgetting to live in the moment and I haven’t felt very happy. This was a good reminder to stop waiting for what’s to come and try and enjoy the moments that are happening now.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. In life, we each visit the time zones of Past, Present and Future. I don’t think we should regret spending time in any of them. The key, I think, is to travel to them all, and frequently. Good writing, as always!

    Liked by 2 people

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