Patience is not my greatest virtue.
I do not have many virtues to begin with, but I’ve always joked that patience is the one I lack the most. But, having now sat back and evaluated my choices in 2015, I am starting to wonder if perhaps I have more patience than I’ve given myself credit for. After all, it seems I have spent quite a bit of my life waiting for something incredible to happen.
I waited throughout high school for the chance to be independent, to be reckless and wild free from the watchful eyes of my parents. I’ve held my breath for a midnight flight to Neverland to prove my childish beliefs in the fantastical were not simply the stuff of wishful thinking.
I’ve put off contributing in any meaningful way to society in case I haven’t experienced enough yet to offer an informed opinion on matters of injustice and necessary reform. My novel is sitting on my desktop, gathering metaphorical dirt as I postpone working on it until I’m in “the right mood” or until I’ve got “enough time” to concentrate all my mental power on it.
Hell, I’ve waited until I’ve finished my workout and eaten my dinner to start internship applications, but by then it’s too late and I might as well hold off until morning. I told myself travelling around Scotland could be done when my degree was in hand. Love can wait until I have a stable job and am no longer flitting about trying to find myself and my place in the world.
I argued that happiness would come when I was done toiling my way through high school, fighting my way through college, but when will “I can do that tomorrow” ever mean I get to it today? So though I admit that change should be possible any day, and not just when our calendar signifies the start of a new year, I will use this symbolic turn of the page to say enough is enough. I am done waiting for tomorrow to start making the most out of today.
I am not putting off what is difficult, painful, terrifying, and new for the sake of comfort and routine. I will not ask myself to suffer in the present without a moment of reprieve because the hope dies when the numbness of now erases the concept of a future. I am so sick and tired of putting others first, of caring too much about his happiness and his stories to start making any of my own.
I will not make myself small to fit into someone else’s world and I will not contain my force of nature just because he is afraid of the storm. I will make my plans and establish my routines, but in the little moments between tasks, I will venture beyond the normality of Netflix to explore new hiding places from which to observe the world from a different vantage point. I will try and let myself live, to enjoy the little buzz that comes from a good book or a warm cup of tea by the window as the rain tap dances across the rooftop to the street below. I will be unapologetically myself, waiting for no one’s permission or seal of approval before I act.
I am tired of telling myself that I am not ready. I am no longer standing in my own way or putting myself down because someone once told me I could not fly. I once believed I could change the world and that I could do anything I set my mind to. I must believe once more that it is okay to have big dreams and high hopes, because those who cannot imagine a brighter future cannot build it.
2016 is going to be a good year for me, not because fate has willed it so, but because I will make it so. 2016 is the year I stop waiting for something good to happen to me, and start living as if waking up is the best thing I could ask for. And the rest, well the rest is up to me to make worthwhile.