Here in my waiting place

My favorite part of the day is waiting for Jeff to come home.

I get off three hours before he does which gives me enough time to go to the gym, clean the house a little, and make a good dinner that HAS to include candles (because I’m obsessed with them). It’s been a year that we’ve been together and over three years since he’s been in my life, yet I still get nervous when I see the headlights as he pulls up and I still relish the funny feeling that tickles my heart when he comes through the door with his bag and a tired smile.

Waiting for him is one of my favorite things in the world.

jeff and i at restaruatn

But then, there’s the waiting that hasn’t been so fun in my life. You can attest to this too.

The waiting for Friday after a long and dreadfully slow work week. The waiting for an answer to an important prayer. The waiting for an important meeting that could make or break your career. The waiting for the sun to rise after a restless night and tear-stained pillow. The waiting place that has you sitting on the edge of your seat, fumbling with your fingernails, chewing on your lips, heart racing.

You know what that waiting feels like. And that’s because for some reason we’re all pre-conditioned to be seated in the next moment, and not this one. We all have the tendency to plan, to worry, to wonder how the sun will look in the morning when there are still stars to count. To look at one another in this waiting place and say, “So, what are you waiting for?” while we anxiously wait for the door to open and check our calendars.

One of my very favorite authors is Dr. Seuss. As an avid reader and writer, that sounds weird even to my own ears to say it, but to me he was a stroke of genius who could speak to my toddler just as easily as to me at 27. An excerpt that has always stuck out to me is this one.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come,
or a plane to go or the mail to come,
or the rain to go or the phone to ring,
or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or No
or waiting for their hair to grow.

Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night

or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.

Everyone is just waiting.

The truth of it catches my breath sometimes. Last night in particular I caught myself thinking about this notion, and even recited this excerpt under my breath with a smile as I stirred the sauce that simmered on the stove.

I look back on things I used to wait for. Things I used to pray for. Things I sometimes shrugged my shoulders at, negatively telling my heart it might not come. But everything did, in one way or another. I have never waited in vain.

Yet here I am at times, completely consumed within my waiting place, as we all are, completely forgetting that the room we’re in right now was the room we were waiting to get into weeks, months, or even years ago. We’re standing right within an answered prayer. And yet–we wait again for something else.

waiting on rock

You may be waiting for a promotion while forgetting about how at one time you were waiting to get the job. You may be waiting for a baby while forgetting about how at one time you were waiting to find your soul mate. You may be waiting for a husband while forgetting about how at one time you were praying to get out of that bad relationship and you finally earned the strength. Maybe you’re waiting for the rain to stop. For summer to come. For that big vacation. For the big break. For the divorce to finalize. For your child to get their act together. For the day that the scale has a number you actually like.

For anywhere other than here.

Everyone is just waiting.

Yet last night I was reminded what the waiting place in our lives should actually feel like. While I was waiting for him to get home, wiping down the counters and chopping chicken and listening to Ray Lamontagne on Pandora, I was reminded that my waiting place can be joyful. Exciting. A time of preparation and beauty and excitement for what’s about to come through the door. It can be a time that I’m truly relishing my present moment, smelling the fragrance of a cooking meal and dancing a little in the kitchen with a spatula in hand while my pup stood on his hind legs, eager to join. It can be a time where life is perfect, despite how anxiously I await the next hour.

waiting for train

The waiting room can truly be the living room too.

I don’t know what you’re waiting for today. But it can wait.

And the wait can be exciting if we shift the way we see it. Because before you know it, you’ll be standing in the next room, realizing with astonishment that time carried you there despite every anxiety that told you it would not. The sun rose anyway, despite the worry. The hands of the clock pushed you onward.

So we might as well enjoy it and get the butterflies while we wait.

We might as well dance in the kitchen.

2 thoughts on “Here in my waiting place

  1. I agree that the present is that which calls is to focus AND I know I am impatient as well and that has cost me dearly, especially when not waiting for God’s solution. …waves


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