I’ve never been a very patient person. If you asked my husband he’d probably say that was an understatement. In my defense, I blame genetics. All joking aside, though, my impatience is a real problem. Whenever a family member or myself has an appointment or anywhere to be that requires a schedule I lose my shit. Suddenly everything is an emergency and I’m running around like a maniac trying to get everyone corralled out the door. Heaven forbid someone forget something or they decide they have to go to the bathroom right before we have to walk out the door, that’s an instant recipe for a lid flip. If I have decided something needs to get done at that moment then you better watch out if you don’t jump to it. I’m not proud of these statements and I recognize that it’s a serious flaw that needs attention. Here’s the problem, though, I don’t know how to control it. I’m an impatient person in a chaotic world.
I have recognized for some time that my penchant for patience is lacking. In the moments when I’m fuming because I think we’re going to be late or my husband hasn’t done something I have decided must get done right the f*ck now my inside voice sometimes goes, “you know you’re f*cking crazy right now, right?” That’s usually when I get more pissed because I know that voice is right but I’ve already crossed into crazy town so I feel like I have to stay there. I’m nothing if not committed. I don’t like being that person.
How, then, does one go from impatience to patience? Therapy? All I know is that I need to get it under control. Becoming a mom has helped some. Nothing will test the limits of your patience like a 4-year old who decides she wants to stop and touch every single object she can find before walking out the door when you’re already late. When I chose to stay home with my daughter last year it was bad news bears at first. I didn’t realize just how bad my patience was until I was home with her 24/7. Those first few months were rough for me and my daughter and full of a lot of growing pains and personal growth on my part. Once we got through those speed bumps, though, I came out the other side not a completely patient person but drastically improved.
Though I feel my patience level has improved since becoming a parent, it’s still not great. I’m hardwired to feel like everything is an emergency and overcoming those feelings is tough. There are days when I swear I’ve probably counted to 10 a million times and it’s amazing I haven’t passed out with all the deep breaths I take. Then there’s my tell, I could have the calmest face ever but when I feel the warmth on my chest, I know that it’s beet red. That’s how you know I’m actually fuming inside and want to kill. In those moments I just hope that I have a shirt that goes all the way up to my neck so no one can see. V-necks are my downfall in those situations. Still, I don’t always succeed. Everyone has their off days, right? I want to be a patient person, I recognize how my behavior affects the people around me. It is my daily struggle.
The hardest thing about being such an impatient person is that I recognize my behavior in my daughter’s actions. Nothing will punch you in the gut like having your less than desirable traits mirrored back to you through your children. The worst part is that I have no right to be mad when she acts that way because I’m the same way, of course she thinks it’s okay. Gut punch and parent fail.
They say the first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem, so at least I’m there. I take deep breaths, count to 10 and walk away when I really feel like I’m losing it. Meditation and yoga have helped some. Being a parent has helped the most. There is nothing I fear more than having my daughter turn into a rude and impatient person. I don’t want to be responsible for that. I’m definitely a work in progress and I pray that I can be the type of person and mother that teaches her child how to demonstrate patience.
What trait do you have that you dislike the most?