As a child, I used to look forward for my maternal uncle to come from abroad. He is a sailor and he used to travel a lot, and when he used to visit once a year, he would bring a suitcase full of goodies for me. I would be like a jack in the box. I wouldn’t sit still. And finally, I would be left alone in a room with “the” suitcase. Life was good. But somewhere I heard the elders in my family say: Patience, have patience. I didn’t know the meaning of this word then.
Later, when I was giving a lot of entrance exams for MBA and things were moving slow, I heard this word again. The young and restless heart doesn’t know the meaning of this word. No way!
Then came marriage and kids followed. I hardly knew when my day began or ended. It was like life was slipping off my hands. My social graph was falling dangerously. I again heard this word from many people. I am a mother, don’t teach me patience! (eyes rolling desperately)
Present Day: This word doesn’t leave me alone. I wonder why. An extra nerve called Patience is well deserved in our body. It should start from our brains and run straight till the tip of the toe. Ofcourse it should get very strong and thick around our hearts. God, are you listening?
I am learning the meaning of this word very patiently, I must say. A lot is happening. Husband is away in another country for work. Meanwhile, I am single parenting. (Did I just hear an applause?) Work is busier than busy. Friends seem to be painting their own lives. (Disclaimer: I love my friends to bits. Darlings, don’t bark at me after reading this blog.) My neck seems to be the focal point of stress. It shows me the middle finger every time I push myself a little more than I can take. I haven’t been reading quite well. That is a polite way of saying that my Kindle has been resting quite a lot. (Yeah, kill me). And I could shout from every corner of my house: I NEED A BREAK. Shhhh.
I know I am not alone.
A very dear friend of mine is nursing her husband from a bout of dengue. There is another one who is waiting as she is understanding a new meaning of love. Not too far away, a mother I know of is waiting for her pre-teen’s tantrums to come down. Another friend is grieving the death of her two pet dogs. A few friends are taking breaks from their careers and waiting to find a new path, a new journey.
Lately, I have begun to like Rumi. More than his poetry, its his quotes that fascinate me a lot. I love it when a few words hold a world of meaning.
This one has caught my eye…rather heart.
Patience is not sitting and waiting, it is foreseeing. It is looking at the thorn and seeing the rose, looking at the night and seeing the day. Lovers are patient and know that the moon needs time to become full.
Beautiful, isn’t it? Looking beyond is patience.
Patience is when my mother waits and waits for me to get free and finally takes away my pen and books and says, “Enough of work. Take a break and watch TV.”
It is waiting for Onam so that I can make Pookolum.
It is waiting for my Kindle to get charged so that I can read tonight.
It is looking forward for a little time out with my friends.
And undoubtedly when my little daughter looks at the horizon through my favourite window and says, “Amma, see those trees. That is where Pappa works na?” I respond, “Yes”. In my heart I say, “Let’s patiently wait till the road from that tree to home gets shorter.