With all the changes going on in my life, I thought it would be an excellent time to work on changing aspects of me I’ve struggled with about myself. One thing in particular I have come to realize that is important to work on changing (if at all possible), is my inability to wait.
I’m excellent at waiting for holidays, birthdays, presents, buying things, especially if I cannot afford them, or wait to buy something until I decide if I want it or need it.
However, I cannot wait and let things go until later. I will push and push myself until I am exhaust to the point I will fall over. For some reason it doesn’t occur to me, I need as much energy to get where I’m going as it will take to come back.
Years ago my ex husband was frustrate with me, (of course his frustration with me occurred more than once, as we were married). However, on this particular occasion we were on vacation and going to hike into the Grand Canyon for the day. It was a goal and I was bound and determined to hike all the way to the canyon bottom. I was after all in fairly good shape.
We started out on our trek about 10 am into the canyon, I clearly had excitement painted on my face. I’m hopping down continually moving in a uniform pace, excited I was actually doing this, feeling confident over the prospect of accomplished this amazing feat. It was a warm day, but the further down into the canyon we went the hotter it became.
Heat doesn’t bother me for the most part, but being cold… I’m one of those odd people who doesn’t mind heat, or hard work, I see both as a mark of perseverance and longevity to be able to handle the environment and use my body in benefial ways. Besides, sometime I don’t realize how things affect me until I have reached the point of no return.
As we continued our hike I noticed the more were descending the crabbier and more unhappy the ex became. Good thing I was several paces in front of him, because he was irritable to say the least. He had a look of utter distain on his face, and would alternate from having a scowl to being angry every time I looked back. Nothing I said or did lighten his mood.
I seem to feed off of hard work, and nature and was in my glory, so ignored him, as much as I could, (if you knew him you’d know it was difficult). We decided to take a break as the ex told me he needed to rest, otherwise I would have continued on.
The designated resting spot had places to sit as well as a small refreshment stand, and above all had some shade. As we sat, there were roves of people coming up and descending at steady intervals. The people coming up looked almost lifeless, and hot and appeared quite burned. We spent some minutes observing and the ex making small talk with the other hikers.
I finally decided I wanted to go, and managed to get the ex moving. He must have had it on his mind, but casually he asked me about our hike and how far we were going. He knew but he was feeling me out, it was clear he was running out of stamina, or already had, because he was quite rude.
Finally he calls my attention, “Gena, it’s four hours to the base”.
I was ok with that. “I know, we have an hour more to go at least.”
“It will get hotter as we go down. And it will be twice as hard coming back up.”
I stopped dead in my tracks. It never occurred to me it would be harder. And yes I was getting tired now, that would be 5 more hours. In addition it would also be much cooler as the cannon gets cold at night. Right now it was scorching.
I sighed, listen to what he had to say and agreed to turn around. I was disappointed to say the least, but from a realistic standpoint even if I made it (which I whole heartedly doubted now) he would not be able to. He had been griping for half the time already, and truth be told, I did have a bad ankle, even if I was in better shape than he.
I relinquished my quest and gave up realizing he was right, down was so much easier than going up. While I did give up, ultimately if I hadn’t I would have reached a point I could not longer hike, probably just on my way back up.
While this is one instance that I don’t let go, one that is more profound is my inability to wait and see how things play out. I’m so adamant at finding out, getting results and knowing, that I don’t give others the time to decide what they want to do before I push for answers. I’m sure my need stems from insecurity on my part, however I know it also is a result of having people in my life who left me feeling inadequate.
It never ceases to amaze me when I tell people my feeling, in hopes they will surprise me and respond in a positive ways, I some how end up drive them away. It certainly seems that way at least. I haven’t fully figured out if it is because I come on too strong, or because they realize they cannot meet my expectations, or they think I’m crazy. The strength of which I come across is based on how deeply I feel my emotions. It has nothing to do with the other person, but everything to do with me.
I came to a conclusion the other day, that if perhaps I slowed down my thinking and processed through slower, and worked on being ok with the limbo I was in, perhaps I would gain more from the experience and become more excepting of where I was at the time. It occurred to me that sometimes getting to the other side is not as important as the work it takes to get to the other side.
I was sad about something and instead of realizing it and thinking it though, I wallowed in my sorrow. It wasn’t until the next day I realized that I was sad and had reacted in a way I wasn’t happy with. It occurred to me, “I’ve done this often and miss the the purpose, the journey.
If I had taken the time to work through my feelings and tried to understand them or the drive I had to get to the bottom, maybe my focus would be more on the here and now and not the end. The journey sometimes is the most important part of making it to the finish yet we are told how great to be able to finish is.
It is great to have accomplishments we can be proud of, and ultimately finish but the journey is the true test of strength and insight. If all we have are beginings and ends, it’s like having a sandwich without anything but bread.
How God awful boring that would be.