“For love would be love of the wrong thing; there is yet faith, But the faith and the love and the hope are all in the waiting.” –T. S. Eliot
As we grow older, life seems to consist of waiting. Whether it is simply standing in line at the grocery store or anxiously anticipating the results of an important medical test, we wait. We find various ways to cope with the boredom and anxiety of these situations. Still, these forced periods of pause in our lives can provide us with some time for reflection, but only if we allow it.
This morning I awaited the return of my husband from a camping trip. Because it was a fun excursion for him, I did not worry—well, maybe just a little—but his absence caused some distress in the household. The cats were their usual selves, but little Anakin couldn’t understand why his daddy was gone. Anakin wandered from room to room, with just a brief pause to look at me, hoping for an answer. Too I found myself “wandering” a bit; I puttered around the house and eventually read a favorite book. Finally our waiting ended, and my husband swept Anakin up into an embrace and quickly took him for his usual morning walk. Peace and normality were restored.
This small period of waiting was much different from those absences that I have experienced in the past when a family member has been in the hospital. Those times were filled with stress and anxiety, along with searching for answers. There are rarely answers as to why these illnesses and accidents occur, but I at least have been able to prepare for my family member’s return and help them recover. Sometimes, though, this recovery has not happened, and I was left to wait again in the absence left after their death.
And now I wait again. With the loss of my teaching job and the tumult in the other, my life seems to be stalled as I look for jobs and hope for the next phase in my life to begin. Applying for jobs and writing for this blog and other pages, I eagerly await that call or email that will make that change happen. As I receive those “thanks, but no thanks” emails, though, I wonder if my period in life’s “waiting room” will end.
Let’s face it, waiting can be difficult. As I linger in the waiting room—or perhaps the “hallway”—I am finding that focusing on God is the only way that I can move from moment to moment, discovering the courage to continue on with my tasks even in the face of certain difficulties and those “haters” that I encounter. Searching for that small, still voice—the only constant in my life—I find some meaning. Trust, even trusting in God, has never come easy for me. However, I’m trying to keep in mind that He may have a reason for this tumultuous time in my life, and with Him by my side, I’ll be able to survive the wait.