Wednesday, May 12, 2010

guest post: The Power of Patience

From time to time, some of my friends stop by my Necessary Room. I just love having company over. My good friend, Chris - author of An Inch of Time - is here today to share a very special guest post with us. She was kind enough to share this photo of Buddhist monks creating a mandala - the epitome of patience - to accompany her post. Please join me in welcoming Chris.

one love.

Like an alcoholic entering Al-Anon admits they have a problem with alcohol, I also have a problem, but it isn't alcohol. My problem is impatience and I am an impatient person. However, a potentially life-threatening situation recently occurred forcing me to confront and deal with my impatience.

Early last month I was involved in a serious auto accident involving a teen-aged driver. Both of us, for the most part, were able to walk away from the accident without any serious injuries and I hope it continues to stay that way. Two days after the accident my new car, less than a year old, was declared a total loss. While I did not cause nor contribute to the accident, and since negotiations are ongoing between our respective insurance companies, I won't go into the specifics of the accident.

In the early days after the accident there was a flurry of paperwork to complete and phone calls to make and return. It is often said in times of great stress, strengths emerge in people they never knew they had. Unbeknownst to me buried within the tangled mess of this accident, patience emerged.

Patience has some amazing abilities. I've learned to be, and continue to stay calm. I've learned when we are patient, particularly during stressful times when our patience is stretched beyond its limits, sometimes things turn out remarkably well. It's been five weeks since the accident and so far things have gone well, much better than I would've expected. I have a new car and my life is somewhat back to normal although driving is still a little shaky and I've become hyper-vigilant.

Maybe this is mere coincidence but I truly believe buried in many things that happen to us, be it good or bad, there are lessons to be learned. Some heed these lessons, others need a rude awakening so they are forced to learn these lessons. However, there is one other valuable lesson I learned as a result of this accident, forgiveness and compassion towards the other driver.

Life is often not a patient process but I believe, and have since learned, patience has the ability to ease and help us navigate those rough spots more smoothly.



Elisabeth said...

Patience and humility, Chris. It sounds to me from your post here that you've learned both.

It takes a level of compassion and humility not to jump onto the self righteous platform when we have been wronged.

Given that the accident was not your fault - you do not go into details - it's still good to hear that you have some compassion towards the young driver who may not be quite so blameless.

Inexperience can be a cruel teacher, nut you have learned well.

I hope neither of you were too traumatized. Accidents can be very destabilizing, even when you walk away physically unharmed.

SE'LAH... said...

Chris, I am so thankful that you survived this traumatic event, first and foremost. But how fortunate that you are able to walk away with a life lesson.

I, too, have gone toe-to-toe with patience. Still practising.

Thanks so much for sharing with us here.

one love.

Anali said...

Well said Chris! Be well and enjoy the new car. ; )

Marilyn said...

Patience does come to us in ways unexpected. Loved reading your story. I once selected Patience for my word of the year. Oh my did I need to learn more Patience that year. This year I selected Joy and thought it would be an easy word, but I am always tested when I select my word for the year.

APO (Bem-Trapilho) said...

amazing work!!!

hello edar!
I'm sorry you couldn't leave me a comment on my blog. In fact I didn't recive it. :(
hope you can do it some other time. come again whenever you can.
bigg hugg

Kass said...

Patience is something I have been forced to master. I'm more aware of everything now.
Great post.

Christina said...

waving to chris ; ) so glad you are okay. a wonderful post, indeed.

Toni said...

An excellent post and what a good lesson learned, but in such a hard way. I'm glad there were no serious injuries and that you were able to give forgiveness and compassion to the young driver - and excellent example and lesson he/she received from you.

amelia said...

oh the truth within this post! patience is hard- the only thing I can do when faced with overwhelming stress is to literally take it one moment at a time- I can't even manage a day at a time, I have to break it down even further- but it keeps me sane. great post!

Gayle said...

Oh, patience is not easy for me. It is something I always need to work on. Thank you for sharing about your experience and the lesson you took from it. I'm so glad that there were no serious injuries.

Darcel said...

Patience is a virtue I desire. I've learned to be more patient over the years. Like you said, good or bad a lesson is always learned.

vchelle said...

Patience is something that came natural to me..and I'm sooo grateful! Now, when I listen to others anxiety, I tend to take on their anxiety and then I lose patience... I'm now learning just this week to listen without judgement just patience, love, peace and joy!

Birdie said...

Se'lah, and here you go again with a super great interview :-) thanks for sharing and also to Chris thanks for sharing! Our society is running on high speed and it actually likes us to be inpatient ... quickly do this, get this, buy this and your life will be great and fixed ... some profits on that are huge ... how sad, isn't it? ... I agree with Chris that things happening to us are the hidden lessons we need to learn :-) great great post! hugs