Monday, November 5, 2012

Waiting

Sometimes I write here just for the sake of it, and sometimes it's to unburden my heart or my mind from something that's been weighing on me.  Somehow owning the words and putting them out there in the world makes the burden seem less cumbersome.  :)  This is one of those unburdening posts.

I was reading a book the other day, and one of the characters was an artist, trying to draw her own self-portrait.  She was looking in the mirror, trying to see the 'truth' in her face, when it hit her - her entire demeanor was one of waiting.  Not really living, not moving forward, just waiting.

The character thought back to a talk show she'd seen about people who had been adopted, and a woman on the show.  The woman talked about how she'd never wanted to move from the home she was adopted into, she always made sure the phone was in her name, and always left very explicit forwarding instructions when she moved... so she could always be found.  She was dropping breadcrumbs and waiting for her mother to come back for her.  Just waiting - even as an adult.

The character in the book was waiting for a lover who had moved on without her to find his way back to her... she didn't even know she was doing it, but she was just patiently waiting.

Reading those passages in that book, there was a sharp jolt of recognition - I knew exactly what the author was talking about.  Breadcrumbs.  Waiting.  I've been in both places, and experienced both kinds of waiting she referred to.

Waiting sucks, even when you don't realize you are doing it.

When you are waiting for a parent or a lover to come back for you, you are living in a state of purgatory.  There seems to be little behind you, and nothing clear ahead of you... just an interminable wait in which your senses seem to dull.  There is one pressing question in your heart, even if you don't realize it.  "When will it happen?"  

I wish I'd been able to tell myself the truth:  it may never happen and even if it does, it may seriously disappoint.  And when you've spent so much time waiting for something, it's devastating when it badly disappoints.  When this happens you begin to realize just how much time you wasted waiting, and how badly you've taken your life, as it is, for granted.

I wish I'd have known that I had the power to free myself from that purgatory - heck, I wish I would have simply recognized I was IN IT before I wasted so much of my life waiting for life to realign into the thing I thought it should be.

I was wrong.  Who am I to say where life should take me?  Who am I to have the audacity to WAIT for something I think I'm entitled to?  Who am I to believe that because I love someone, and want them in my life, that it MUST be that way?

I wish I had learned the art of letting go a long time ago.  Hell, I wish I really understood it now.  All I know is that waiting is purgatory, and such a waste of the precious time we've been given.  I cannot sit here and grieve for my wasted time anymore, though, I know that.  Giving that grief any more space will be to wait again... I cannot stand to wait again, or any longer.

I will just sign off with this thought:  Life goes on with or without you, and if you are 'waiting', when you come out of it you won't know what to do with yourself.  I don't know yet what my true purpose is, but I do know this - it isn't to wait.

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