Waiting…. The action of staying where one is or delaying action until a time or until something else happens. (noun)…
This seemed to be the story of my life. Waiting on something, something to happen, something that would make my heart smile and flutter with joy! I will never forget the day on a cold winter afternoon when I had a cry fest in my office. Some would argue that at 30 and successful (whatever that meant), I had nothing to be sad about. Yet here I was an Assistant principal with a promising career, in a great school district, crying my eyes out mid-day, simply because I had to WAIT! I know you are thinking “What exactly were you waiting for?” No not the bus, or in a long supermarket line. Not even at Best Buy or Apple to get the latest tech gadget. I was simply waiting on …. LOVE! It had never really registered to me until that day that this was the one thing that kept me up at night, staring into space in my one-bedroom bachelorette pad.
On this cold winter day, almost every teacher in our school announced that they were either getting married or yup… having a baby. Suddenly as I stood there trying to be a good sport and cheer on my colleagues, all I could do was think about how I was 30, single, and childless. I calmly walked out and went into the bathroom. The room starting spinning as I re-imagined all the staff cheering, clapping, and some even crying tears of joy. After I cried for what seemed like an eternity, I walked to my office and the tears continued. My Principal at the time walked in and just stood there. You see, her and I had been together for years, and she had never seen me in such a state. As I mumbled over my words crying hysterically, she grabbed her tissues and did what she did best… told me yet another story from her high-powered New York days working in Television and Radio.
As you can imagine, I was in no state to hear yet another story — but I quietly listened through my tears and an excessive amount of tissues. She went on to explain that she thought she had it all at 28. A nice brand-new car (Range Rover to be exact), Tiffany’s ring, and of course a dream job in New York. However, she quickly realized that she did not have it ALL! Yes, she had “things”, but not Love. Love that is pure, strong in moments of uncertainty. Love that is limitless, Love that waited on the moment to be blissful, and surprising, and thoughtful. She then went on to tell me about her co-worker who she admired so much simply because she waited. She was 38 and not married, but when Love came along it was RIGHT. It was right because she waited. And while she waited, she did all the things she wanted to do. She traveled to the places she wanted to travel, got the house she wanted, and ultimately the love she wanted found her. As my tears started to dry, she handed me a tissue and left me with this… “When you wait.” The next 3 years were nothing short of eventful. I traveled to the places I had always dreamed of, purchased the home I always wanted, read some books that I never found the time to read and guess what? In my moment of stillness, love came. It came quietly and unexpectedly.
As I was sitting home reading with my candles lit, my phone rang. “Hello, it’s what you’ve been waiting for.” Just kidding, he didn’t say that, but he did ask me out. Just like the night I stared at the wall wondering if I would ever go from Ms. to Mrs, here I was staring at the wall again — but this time I was smiling. And so the dating began… I was in a whirlwind and convinced that we would be nothing more than friends. To my shock, it was much more than that. He was the Love I had waited for; except he came exactly when I stopped waiting. The definition states that when we wait, we are delaying. When I stopped delaying and started living, just like my Principal said, love found me. I stopped worrying about how old I was or if I was ever going to have children.
When I made the conscious choice to wait on not just love, but the openness of my heart being able to receive such a gift, love found me. Peacefully, quietly, and on its own timing, not mine.
No matter what your heart is waiting for, give it time to be truly and authentically yours.
Your wait will all be worth it in the end. That moment when your love, career, or even the thing you just want to happen, happens — it’ll all be worth the time you spent staring at your walls in the dark, or crying at the most random part of your day. If we can wait for sales on Black Friday and Apple watches, we can surely wait for a life-changing event to happen.
Christina Atterbury is a hopeless romantic who thought that her love story would never come true. She shares with us her beginning journey of “ When you Wait.” It is a short yet classic reminder of when we stop waiting for something to happen, it just simply happens! Waiting doesn’t mean it wont happen… it simply means it hasn’t happened yet.