anticipation of life

Anticipation: Another Life Transition

Anticipation can be limiting and possibly lead to disappointment if we expect a specific outcome at a designated time.  What can we learn from being patient? <img src = ""/>

This week I continue with the theme of navigating through life’s transitions.  I invite you to consider a situation of anticipation, something you are eager to have happen in your life.  Perhaps it’s the birth of a child, marriage or a career change.  I do not want to give you the impression that it is bad to set goals or envision big dreams for your life.  I want you to consider what you are missing by rushing ahead in your mind to the thing you are anticipating.  There are experiences along the way, unexpected events through the transition, that you might be tempted to gloss over or opportunities that you might miss because of the intense focus placed on future events or the outcome you are expecting.

I will explore being in the state of anticipation and journeying with patience through these transitions.  It is great to be hopeful, but it can be limiting and possibly disappointing to expect a specific outcome at a designated time.  We all know that life is unpredictable, and yet we often try to control it.

Last week we considered 3 questions which you could also apply to this situation: What troubles me the most about this time in my life ? What am I supposed to learn from this?  Where is God in this situation?  However, I will pose three new questions for you to also ponder as you travel the road of anticipation: What emotions am I feeling that fuel my desire to jump ahead to the future? What can I learn from being patient?  What is God offering me in the present moment?

My Story of Anticipation

I clearly remember the day my first child due to arrive.  I had prepped and prepared for 9 long month – well 40 weeks to be exact which is clearly longer than 9 months as any expectant mother can tell you.  I got out my video recorder and walked around the house, filming the empty nursery, the shiny new toys and adorable clothes.  As I replayed the tape for myself, I was clearly NOT joyful.  I was disappointed.  My due date would come and go and still there was no baby in my arms.  I would wait another 4 days for that awesome privileged.  I can look back on it now and see that I needed that time to prepare, but my state of anticipation nearly robbed me of the joy and peace that those last few days would bring to me.

What emotions was I feeling?

Anxious and disappointed that things were out of my control.  I wanted that baby in my life and in my arms right that very moment.  I had pinned all my hopes on the date that she had been “promised” to me.  I was obviously being unrealistic and selfish.  My daughter was not the first baby to be a few days late.  I felt somehow cheated, even though I was obviously not going to have to wait forever…a few more days seemed like an eternity and I was impatient.  Also, there were underlying fears… fear of child birth… fear of parenting … fear of all the changes a baby would bring.  My mind had convinced me that somehow having the baby would alleviate all of these fears.  I was ready to be rid of the overwhelming fears, and my mind had already set the course for that solution to be having the baby at the appointed time.

What can I learn from being patient?

Patience gives me a little breathing room.  If I can wait, relax and try to enjoy the state of just being in the moment – then I am living.  I am not in the past obsessed with what has already happened, nor am I in the future mentally creating expectations that might not occur. If I can sit patiently in the state of anticipation, then I can fully feel it and cherish the blessing that I have something great ahead of me.  What this state taught me was that I had an enormous capacity to love someone that I had not even met.  To embrace the joy that a little baby was growing inside me and that was a very special privilege that not everyone gets.

What was God offering me in that moment?

Some precious time to rest.  I had all the physical things ready for my new baby, but I was given the gift of time to rest and prepare myself physically.  A few extra days for the baby to be fully ready to enter the world healthy and strong.    I remember sleeping a lot and surely I would need that extra energy in the days that followed the birth. But it is only in hindsight that I can view that as a gift.  I also had time to overcome the fears I had of the actual childbirth.  The waiting made me more prepared and determined not to be afraid.  In this time of rest, my excitement was allowed to percolate and to grow larger than my fears.  When I finally went into labor, I was calm ..well as calm as a first time mom can be… and filled with courage.

For another example of how my expectations could have limited my experiences, read my blog on exploring autumn.

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Thanks for joining me on the journey…

Posted by Still Sacred

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