Patience!

Talk about a HUGE word! Maybe one of the most important words. Certainly a word that does great things, subtle, but great. That’s it! It is a subtle word. A subtle skill. A subtle trait. It calls no attention to itself and is in fact often over looked. But oh, its power!

I’ve learned patience from my husband. He was a patient daddy. Allowing our oldest to follow along behind while he installed new woodwork in our sunroom. A very young Daniel mimicking Daddy. Wearing his own tool belt, wielding his own red hammer, patiently (yes, he was already learning from his Daddy) hammering nails about a sixteenth of an inch into the brand new woodwork. Tap, tap, tap, calmly helping. My husband, later, calmly sanding about forty nail dents out of his newly installed wood. He is a patient man. I know because I am married to him and he has shown me much patience!

I’ve learned patience from my son. Daniel is an excellent teacher. Patiently explaining how to use shortcuts on the computer. Quietly summarizing a book he has read, engaging you in his summary, seeking out your thoughts, encouraging you to ask questions. Pushing you to be the best version of yourself. Happily running ahead a mile or two while on a hike, waiting for you to catch up. Enthusiastically providing you the best strategies for biking up a ridiculously tall hill (some would call it a mountain), encouraging you not to quit. Circling around a few times while you walk the remainder of said hill (because, really, normal humans don’t get to the top on a bike!).

I learned patience from my mom. In her last few months of life. When she would forget, and I’d help her remember. Retelling the same stories day after day. Reassuring her that it was ok to forget, even though I didn’t understand why she was forgetting. Helping her to the bedroom. Then to the shower. Then to the chair so she could eat breakfast. Drying her hair and trimming her nails. Helping her pull on her socks because she just couldn’t manage. Easing her panic with patience.

And of course, I’ve learned patience from my students. Because they deserve it most of all. And the more I practice patience, the more productive they become. No one meant to spill that water bottle. Or lose that math test. Or break that pencil sharpener (shavings all over the floor). Or ask to go to the bathroom right when you were beginning to introduce a new concept. That story had nothing to do with the lesson on hand, but it had to be told. Patience made a difference.

Patience makes a difference. Patience is a HUGE word!

5 thoughts on “Patience!

  1. The struggle is real. Thank you for sharing your experience with your own mentors of patience, especially the lessons learned from your mom, and from your time spent with her. Being patient with her memory challenges, even though you didn’t know why yourself. I love this part especially. Thank you for sharing that and letting us in…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Your use of vignettes helps the reader understand the ways your family members have modeled what it means to be patient. I love the way you tied it together at the end demonstrating how you practice patience with your students, not always an easy task. Your students are very lucky to have a patient teacher!

    Liked by 1 person

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