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Waiting Around


With the holiday season in full swing and people putting up Christmas decorations before the Thanksgiving turkey is thawed prior to roasting, people wishing the year would end, and rude comments made about the year’s events….I am being polite here; there are other words I would use to describe the commentary over the past few years and especially this year.

It seems that people are wishing their life away instead of looking at what they do have. Perhaps the long years of schooling have given me the sense of what delayed gratification looks and feels like; perhaps growing up on a farm where few things if any were instant click on an icon type projects; perhaps some of my artwork constructed one piece, one stitch at a time or perhaps my natural introverted nature puts a different spin.

I can’t say this year has been fun. I don’t enjoy wearing a mask; I don’t enjoy not seeing family or friends; I don’t enjoy virtual church, I don’t enjoy the most exciting project of the day being what shall we have for supper tonight, and then there’s scrolling through social media trying to find something that isn’t a nasty comment about someone or something.

But there is a comfort in routine and rules. Rules create boundaries that we may not like but are there to create order. While I may think stopping at the end of my driveway in rural Wisconsin is a foolish endeavor, it is meant for my safety and the safety for others—although those others may rarely drive past my house making the whole idea of stopping seem a frivolous and useless task.

Routines keep us moving and to use the old maxim-keep the world turning. Children and dogs—and us–thrive on routine. It is knowing what is expected and the predictable outcome that gives comfort when chaos descends upon us. The occasional outlier—a vacation; an unexpected gift or visit, a new job shake up our lives pleasantly—and then there are the others that are not so fun—and we are grateful to return to the humdrum of making coffee at 3:30 AM to get ready to drive to work at 4 AM.

Those days and weeks of work were tolerable because there was always some sort of reward in the offing—perhaps a wintery day spent on the beach or staying up late to photograph a lunar eclipse.

Roseate Spoonbill at Sea Rim State Park, Texas
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