Life Isn't a Waiting Room

What you're waiting for may not happen

Bread bowl covered by colourful tea towel, with tomatoes and duck ornament nearby.
Waiting for bread to rise at Evergreen.

I’m doing a lot of waiting lately.

  • Waiting for daffodils I planted weeks ago to emerge and splash the garden with yellow

  • Waiting for a reply from a potential literary agent.

  • Waiting for Spring so my toes can thaw out

  • Waiting for a spray-on, instant teeth whitener to be invented

  • Waiting for the worldwide lost socks conundrum to be solved

  • Waiting for my bread to rise

There’s nothing wrong with waiting. It’s a part of life. What burdens it is the tablespoon of impatience I add to it.


Impatience is the yeast in the dough of waiting. The more impatience I add to the dough of waiting, the bigger and less manageable the waiting becomes. And waiting with impatience turns into worry.


Worrying while waiting is bad for my health and yet it gives me a false sense of importance.


I assume that the more things I worry about, the more important I am. If I don’t have stuff to worry over, then I’m not doing enough in my life. So, my thoughts dart about, searching for things to wait for and worry about until they happen.


One of the secrets of a happy life is to refuse to worry. Worry gets me nowhere. Worries just whirl around in my head like mad miniature ceiling fans on high speed.


Worry and impatience don’t make daffodils grow or literary agents beam on me with approval. Spring will come when it’s ready to, and bread always rises in its own good time. There are bound to be several top scientists researching spray-on teeth whitener, and I’ve heard a rumour that lost socks have been sighted in one of the rings circling Saturn.


Regarding some of the things I’m waiting for, they may happen, or they may not. Being impatient and turning into a worry pot over them won’t change a thing except my state of wellbeing.


The best thing for me to do is not to wait. Just get on with other things in life.


Put things in place for something to happen (plant bulbs, send off a synopsis to the literary agent, check the bread dough is warm), then move on to the next thing, always staying present in the moment.


Living this way makes impatience and worry disappear to the distant rings of Saturn where they join all the lost socks of the world.


Fresh loaf of bread cooling on rack.
Freshly baked bread at Evergreen amidst blue shadows.

With love, Marlane


First published on Medium.com/change-your-mind


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