Ms. Impatience

Because, of course that should be my name.

I’m certain many of us have epiphanies about what we are doing wrong at various points in our lives. Apart from those of us who have our heads constantly stuck up our own asses, and thus find it impossible to acknowledge [even to ourselves] that we can do wrong at all. I have these moments a LOT; because I accepted a long time ago that I was exceptionally flawed, and those flaws needed acknowledgement and conscious work. Case in point: impulsiveness.

My impatience though was a little harder to pin down, because it isn’t universal. I have tons of patience for certain, usually frustrating, things like sorting out tiny things piece by piece; or listening to a boring story; or dealing with stubborn stains. You get the gist. The problem is that I had no idea that patience varies from situation to situation. And there is one area I have absolutely zero ability to wait: Life.

Hm. That’s a big topic, so I’m going to break it down a little. It does encompass my point though, but it deserves some explanation also.

Firstly, and most importantly, I am impatient when it comes to a breakdown in any relationship. This could be an argument with mum, or [formerly] a disagreement with a boyfriend. I needed to resolve stuff and get back to the original [albeit improved with now better understanding] status quo INSTANTLY. To a great extent, this is why I always make the first move after a bust up. I also am usually the one who has messed up too, but that’s another story.

Why is this a problem? Well, because people require time to process. Emotions, feelings, thoughts, anger, frustration, sadness, etc. It is hard to come through to a clear understanding without processing. And my blundering onto the scene is not helpful. It isn’t even helpful to ME, because then the processing happens AT me, instead of inside that person’s mind. I need to learn to respect that everyone needs their space and some time to process, and not be so driven to fix things in the shortest amount of time.

Secondly, I am impatient of uncertainty in life. For the big things, mind you. Not if I’m getting a taxi or something. I have constant thoughts of “where is all this going?” and it is stupid and unproductive. Countless times I have heard smarter-than-me people saying that the journey is important. But hasn’t percolated into my anxiety. It is scary to be faced with the spectre of bills stacking up, or medical emergencies, without an idea of where those funds will come from. And a multitude of things like that. Uncertainty scares me because I have no control over the outcome, but I still have to face consequences. I can work my fingers to the bone, but it might not translate to saleable commodities. Etc.

This is a problem because my anxiety achieves nothing. Whether or not I worry, the outcome remains unaffected. So basically I’m torturing myself at least one time too many. Pointless.

There are many times I have wished to know the end of my story – or current story arc – at my lowest ebb. Of course, it never happens, and yet the desire is strong. Perhaps it is the sense of an impending timeline that causes this stress, and that was the key to my epiphany.

I have been wanting something specific to happen for the past couple of months. It is partially in my hands to make it happen, but not completely. The trouble is that my actions could end this something much earlier than its time, much like overwatering a plant. The other day though, I sat down in a quiet a spot, and actually reflected on my feelings. I recognised that my impatience was because of what I thought were deadlines that would irrevocably change the status quo. And I had to force myself to accept that I needed to let things be. Not force any issues. Not get sunken into a pit of desire, anxiety, and gloom. Just let it be.

It was super hard, but I did it. I do however still hang on to hope. That’s the next on my list of epiphanies I guess.

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