• mariokiefer

Patience is a Virtue

As a small child, that period between Thanksgiving and Christmas seemed interminably long. “A whole month!” I wanted to scream. “You mean that I have to wait a whole month!” I felt I might die during that interval of time. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


When I was ten years old, I couldn’t wait to become a teenager. Being a teenager meant that I was almost grown. I would have more freedom without the parental units always hovering over me. Three more years seemed like such a long time. I felt that I might die if I had to wait that long! Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


When I was thirteen, I couldn’t wait to get my driver’s license. Having a driver’s license meant that I would have the freedom to come and go without relying on others to transport me wherever I wanted. Another three years or so seemed like such a long time to wait. I thought that I might die during the wait. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


When I was sixteen, I couldn’t wait to turn eighteen. At the time, that was drinking age and it meant that I could go to bars and meet other people. It also meant that I could vote. It meant that I was an adult free to make my own decisions. Another two years seemed like such a long time. I wasn’t sure I could stand the wait, I thought that I might die before those two years had passed. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


When I was eighteen, all I wanted was to get through school and finally make my own money. I wanted to start my career and become my own man. I could hardly wait and thought I might die before it happened. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


At twenty-three, I couldn’t wait until I started the right job, the one that paid enough money so that I didn’t worry about how to pay my rent and utilities. I knew that I had to pay my dues and that it would take time, but I thought that I might die waiting. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


At twenty-six, I wanted nothing more than to finally meet someone, to marry, maybe have a children, to be the husband and father that I knew I was destined to be. I couldn’t wait to start that journey. As I dated all of the “wrong” people, I thought I might die before I met “the one.” Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


At thirty, all I wanted was to have my own little piece of land; a nice little house in the burbs where the kids could have a trouble free childhood; a place they could someday return to and remember as home. I thought I might die before I signed those mortgage papers. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


When I turned forty, I couldn’t wait for my kids to grow up, leave home, and embark on their own journey. I was looking forward to the day when the house was empty and my significant other and I could spend time together, alone, remembering who we used to be. I thought I might die before that happened. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


At fifty, I could’t wait to see my children when they came home for a visit. As the time span between visits grew longer, I thought I might die waiting to see them. Patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


When I turned sixty, I looked forward to retirement. Five years didn’t seem so far off. In the blink of an eye, it would pass, but still, patience was not my strongpoint and I thought that day would never come.


In my dotage, I knew that I had a good life. I realized that all that time spent longing in anticipation for the next step was wasted time never to return. All that I wanted to was to spend my final days around those I loved. I only wanted time to slow down. Everything was moving too fast.


I could be patient, because I wasn’t ready for that day to end.

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