We all live in a state of anticipation. Human beings wrestle with this condition known only to mankind. No matter how many times we tell ourselves to let go, release our grip, be in the moment and trust the unknown, we cannot convince ourselves to do so for very long. We may even try and trick ourselves into believing that these longings and desires do not really matter. But they do matter. So, we quietly or not so quietly, hold out with or without patience, waiting to see how and when these hopes of ours come to fruition.
Standing by for what we hope will happen does not necessarily get any easier the older we get. But we do accumulate our own personal experiences, a history, a gallery, so to speak, of those events that we’ve waited for and that have come to pass. These personal victories are important to remember.
I recall when early in my marriage, I couldn’t wait for the day when my husband and I would actually converse, openly, without him shutting down and without me getting angry and impatient with him.
Did chanting “Star light, star bright, the first star I see tonight, I wish I may, I wish I might, have this wish I wish tonight,” make my desire come true? Was there a magic wand I waved or fairy dust I sprinkled over his head while he slept? How I wished that was true, but it is not.
Instead, while I waited for what I wanted, I worked very hard not to give in to the temptation to walk away from our marriage. I put much focus and effort toward not succumbing to a defeatist attitude. I did not discard my desire or give up on it.
The communication I longed for eventually came, ever so oh so gradually with more than a few private fits, as well as at times, a deflated sense of confidence. It came as I matured. It came while I freed myself of preconceived ideas about how my husband ought to be.
I am happy to report that the kind of communication I longed for has arrived and I find myself giddy as well as extremely grateful.
We don’t anticipate something good coming to pass as though it won’t ever happen. That is why our personal experiences and those victories are so important to recall. They remind us that our waiting is worth the effort it takes to hold out for it.
Why bother to anticipate? No matter how often we find ourselves anticipating a better future, remembering the history of our past victories reminds us that holding out is not a futile endeavor.