It seems appropriate to talk about anticipation this time of year. Anticipation is with us all the time but it is especially present during the holiday season. Anticipation starts in November with Thanksgiving and the gathering of friends and family for a shared meal and blessings. My family celebrates the Christian traditions of Christmas which begins with Advent and continues through Epiphany. Somewhere in there is the Winter Solstice for which I like to cook a simple meal to share with friends. We cannot forget New Year’s Eve and Day and the tradition of setting resolutions or goals as one friend likes to call them. Another favorite anticipated event of a friend is Chinese New Year. So much to look forward to. So much to celebrate. So much preparation, decoration, and anticipation!
What got me thinking about anticipation was the arrival of a notification in my mail box of a parcel that had to be signed for. Yes, it is the holiday season and packages had arrived at the house, but I was not expecting anything at the time the notification arrived. Hmm….. I felt a thrill of anticipation…… a parcel for me.
After leaving my day job, I went to the post office. At the post office there was a line of at least 11 people ahead of me. The post office employees were working as quickly and efficiently as possible. But its the time of year when requests are complicated and take time. For the most part people were polite and well-behaved. (There is always a grumbler.) Finally it was my turn. I handed my notification slip to the postal worker and watched them disappear into the back. Soon they were back with a parcel from my friend in Japan.
As I was standing in the line at the post office, I began thinking of other lines that I had been standing in recently…. grocery store, bakery, book store, coffee shop, etc. We spend a lot of time standing in line. It’s not just this time of year. However if you go shopping on Black Friday, you are asking to spend some serious time in a line. Comedian Eddy Izzard in his show “definite article” has a delightful segment on waiting in line or queuing as he calls it.
I have come to recognize a connection between anticipation and patience. When one looks forward to something it is anticipation. But waiting for the anticipated event, class, trip, gift, experience, etc. is patience. Sometimes it is hard being patient when waiting in anticipation.
In this new year of anticipation and promise, I have high hopes for you and myself. I hope that we have the patience to accept people and situations as they are. That we are not too critical of ourselves or others. That we will experience and live fully in each moment. That we will be kind and generous, willing to teach, help and share. That we shall be rewarded for our hard work. That we will anticipate and appreciate the process of becoming who we are meant to be.
I am anticipating a year of growth, learning and sharing. Thank you for joining me on this journey.