Sweet December. The month of Oohs and Ahhs. And the season of personal restraint. Like the Chipmunks in their Christmas song, we can hardly stand the wait. But wait we must.
Wait for the holidays to begin. Wait for money to buy presents. And wait to see what each day brings.
Why is waiting so painful?
I once watched my granddaughter Smarty Pants throw a tantrum of epic proportions over a piece of candy she told me she wanted ‘right Now’.
I said no. Dinner was almost ready.
The immediate acrobatic response was beautiful to behold. She wailed as she twisted and jerked on the kitchen floor, like drunken groomsmen at a wedding reception. Then, with the same certainty she had thrown herself into this fit, she finished it. She stood up; rubbed her eyes (as though she could not believe what had just happened) and walked away.
There was never a mention of the tantrum or that piece of candy again. But in the throes of that outburst, the body conveyed the mental agony–I don’t know what to do because I really wanted that candy.
We can’t wait. But we should. Because waiting has benefits, too.
In spite of the Chipmunks’ lament, everyone knows that Christmas will Not be late. For some of us, Christmas arrives faster each year.Once the tree goes up and there are beautiful lights everywhere, we wish time would wait. Then we could prepare for and savor the holiday.
Waiting has plenty of benefits. Here are some you probably take for granted:
Wait till your father gets home
Or take your chances with a mother who is so frustrated she fears hurting you.
Wait and see
It’s more than indecision. It’s a warning that pressing for a solution could bring trouble.
An orderly stall tactic that means ‘No, but here’s an idea of when that could change.’ In other words, ‘Not now.’
No matter how uncomfortable, the room on the other side is worse.
Wait until tomorrow
My mother’s hallmark expression caused eye-rolling when I was younger. Now I understand that any crisis can be made a little better with sleep or time.
In the solitude and stillness that waiting brings, forever is paused into countable moments.
We see pieces to the puzzle. Answers to a riddle. Solutions to problems. Strength that didn’t exist before.
Babies, True love, Marriage, Even vacations would lose their appeal if we took one every day. In waiting, a message is revealed.
What we wait for in life will come. Our job is to be ready when it does.