I went to the doctor Monday, after not feeling very well off and on the past few weeks. If you don’t like shots, I don’t recommend waiting until week 3 to go in… because your doctor may suggest a steroid shot. I was given one, and some medicine to combat sinusitis. So, after my appointment, I headed to my drugstore of choice to pick up my prescription.
I went to the pharmacy, told them my name, and was informed that they had to call my doctor to confirm the prescription. I took a phone call, roamed around the small store, and went back almost half an hour later to check in. They still hadn’t reached my doctor’s office. So I perused the aisles some more… looked at nail polish colors, noted the prices of lip stick, checked out the ingredients of most of their snack collection looking for gluten (I’m now gluten free for the next month, and probably forever). Went back to the pharmacy, and was told they still weren’t able to give me my prescription. I asked the girl behind the counter how long it would take once they heard from my doctor’s office. 10 – 20 minutes, they said.
At this point, I wasn’t feeling very well anymore. I just wanted to go home. So I called my mom and told the tale of my lament as I walked the aisles once again. After the almost 20 minute phone call, my medicine still wasn’t done. I debated leaving and coming back later – or sending someone to get it for me – and finally, tired and grumpy, settled down in a chair to wait it out.
About five minutes later, they rang me up.
A minute or two after that, they gave me my medicine.
“I’m sorry about your wait,” the girl said.
“It’s fine,” I replied semi-automatically.
I didn’t feel like it was fine. In fact, it felt like the opposite of fine to me… so much so, that my response initially felt like a lie.
And then I thought about it.
Was it really so terrible that I was there for an hour? Was I really going to be upset about waiting, especially when I had nowhere else to be? Was I going to be frustrated and bitter when I was able to get the prescription antibiotics that I needed – and for under $10 – something so many people don’t have access to? The more I thought about it, the more I realized that I was being ridiculous and my “it’s fine” statement was actually true. I just hadn’t fully believed it at the moment.
So next time you’re fighting to be patient (and maybe failing like I was), stop and ask yourself if you’re being reasonable. Is your situation one of dire need or are you too focused on yourself, your schedule, your plans to see anything else? Is waiting going to truly hinder you in the long run, or are you just upset that your timetable isn’t being met? Question your self and try giving grace and practicing patience… even if you really don’t want to. Trade in self-focus for Spirit-leading, griping for gratefulness. It makes a huge difference.
“True patience grows with the growth of love. We put up with our neighbours to the extent that we love them. If you love, you are patient. If you cease loving, you will cease being patient. The less we love, the less patience we show.” – Gregory the Great