The Waiting Room of Life

I suspect many of us spend a significant portion of life waiting our turn. We may be anxious about waiting, but certainly, we’ll have our turn. Just like the moments at the deli counter, or the doctor’s office, when we sit, keeping busy, watching each person go before us… trying to estimate how much longer it’ll be. It would be preposterous to question IF we will have a turn, only when.

Except, in life, this kind of waiting stretches over decades. Something significant will happen – given enough patience and carefully manipulating circumstances to manifest it. We might not know exactly what’s coming. We just know it’s the important part of our story – the climax culture has promised. Like the movies or fairytales when, after a harrowing struggle, the protagonist has their dreams come true. Fate.

In the intervening moments – which, over a lifetime, accumulate to hours, weeks, months, years – we occupy ourselves… A book, a social network, the news, hangs with friends, vacations, expression, anxious boredom, eating meals. Simple moments. We alternate between these simple moments, and the mysterious manifestation and waiting for this something, this imminent important thing.

Eventually, it might occur to you…

Simple moments are it. Simple moments, minus the pretense and anticipation of the thing, whatever it is, are life itself. The waiting room is actually the place that offers itself up to be enjoyed, always. Whatever we are waiting for, doesn’t exist in the truest sense. Sure, some event might be probable, but there is zero cosmic or mystical guarantee it will ever arrive. Best make peace with that now, eh?

And if you CAN’T make peace with the thing never arriving, why?

Yes – things WILL come – our stories WILL have climaxes – but surely we cannot spend decades expecting them – clutching so tightly we can neither bear life without them, or bear their inevitable departure if they ever arrive. Every moment preoccupied with waiting is necessarily a moment missed, of acknowledging fully, deeply, everything is OK. Knowing this OK-ness is a beautiful home – to be grateful for and share with other people. This is life. Fate manifests completely here.

The waiting room itself, minus the waiting, is a splendid place to be. Both with self and other people. Just being. No urges, no yearning, only slight adjustments to the rudder as time and events unfold.

Everything conceivable thing in the future – pure bonus.

And someday, that’s it. Rest easy, you didn’t miss anything, you were there the entire time.


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