Thursday, May 6, 2010

Their Time vs. My Time

After some thought this morning, I realized that just because I am getting older, I am not necessarily getting wiser.

My appointment with the vet for my 13-yr-old kitty's dental surgery was for 8 a.m. but they didn't open their doors until 8:20. By that time, my cat had been sitting outside the little building but only a few yards from a major street and the traffic noises had him nearly frantic. I was getting extremely agitated, trying the door every five minutes, and finally calling into the office from my prepaid cell, to see if they just forgot to open their doors.

I have great confidence in the vet I met last Friday for the initial exam, and in the one young male assistant I also met that day. So why did waiting that extra 20 minutes bother me so much? If they do for my kitty what I expect that they will do, I should be able to overlook their casual attitude toward time.

My problem, and it is a problem, is that all my life I have been time- and deadline-oriented.

The time-orientation comes from taking two buses to get to school, and taking a bus and a subway to get to work, to being the one person always on time at all my jobs.

The deadline-orientation comes from the first half of my working life as a bookkeeper and junior accountant (payrolls, taxes, etc.) and the second half as a writer, editor, and proofreader.

However, this doesn't mean that I need to impose my standards and my comfort-zone upon others, if they do a good job at what they do, when they finally get to it.

I used to be the most patient person around when it came to standing in line, waiting for appointments, and so on. But when I look back, I see that it was only when things ran on time, according to my schedule. I look back and I can easily see that I ignored the fact that I became impatient and even testy when folks were late.

I even included a special quick-and-easy prayer in my Busy Person's Prayer Book (Waiting for Appointments). Obviously, I recognized that it was beginning to annoy me. So, methinks I'd better follow my own advice and say that prayer a bit more often than I have been doing. There is also that old fave, the Serenity Prayer, which would work just as well.

Father, thank you so much for your guidance and for helping me to deal with waiting for appointments; when people are late, help me realize that those times are ideal times to quietly turn my thoughts to you, an excellent time for prayer.

No comments: