Patience is something we can always work on. I do find lately that I notice I have better tolerance for certain things compared to a year or two ago. For example: this past Sunday in church a family with 3-small children was sitting in front of us. Before the mass even started the 4-year oldish boy was having a melt down and getting dragged out of church… During the second reading; the same thing happened, making the reader at the alter look as though she was lip reading. The whole time it was impossible to focus and they were directly in front of us. Normally I would grab B’s arm and give a tight squeeze, squirm around, roll my eyes and maybe even clear my throat loudly… a few times. But I was surprised at how tolerant (yet still extremely annoyed) I was with this for an hours straight. Of course, as soon as we got in the car we both let out a sigh of relief. Still, I realized I had learned patience.
On the flip side of that, I notice that with other things patience is completely out the window. I think it’s because I have high expectations/standards for the people on the receiving end. I need to do a better job at reminding myself that I can only control myself in turn, my actions. How I react could be just as bad as the trigger, creating a ripple effect and ultimately affecting the future – whether it be long or short term.
Will we ever completely learn patience for everything? I don’t think so, but I know we will learn and adapt in situations only to discover other areas to work on – knowing we can always affect the way we react.