Almost every fiber within me wanted to register my impatience. I had been waiting too long! After all, what is the point of making and honoring an appointment if I am the only one ensuring he is ready at time we had committed to?
Recently I waited in queue that was dominated by cancer patients. I realized that my emotions and response to waiting was changing as I people watched. Who was I to demand more from life than the brothers and sisters around me?
In context, the only emotions that surfaced was sense of compassionate caring laced with a touch of sadness because I did not know what I could do to make anything better. The lingering touch of the disease and treatments was visible. Depending on the individual, the body language varied from fear to resignation, from fragile hope to resilient defiance.
Initially I sat and watched in silence, wanting to take in the scene. The process of letting others touch my heart was wonderfully transforming. I realized there were things I can do, for each regardless of her or his situation.
I can be patient and considerate in all situations. If someone needs to push ahead, giving her or him the benefit of the doubt releases my heart from the lingering touch of frustration. Beyond being neutral, I can be gracious in all situations. It is a peaceful and graceful rebuttal to the aggression underpinning much of life today.
I can offer a smile to those I meet, regardless of the situation. In that smile, my intent is to deliver hope, offer support, and express a willingness to help if I can.
To everyone I met on that hospital floor, I am thankful for your strength and willingness to fight on. Your presence reminded me of hope and the possibilities. Each step an example of responding to the psalmist’s rallying cry; “From east to west, from dawn to dusk, keep lifting all your praises to God!” (Psalm 113.3)
I will forget, but the reminders are always within me. Today. I remembered and recommit.