Monday, December 10, 2012

Patience and December

Something about December always brings a sense of urgency. Maybe it's my birthday, that tangible awareness of another year passing by, or that the calendar is about to shift.

As my mid-twenties have ended, I've realized that patience is a value that deserves to be cultivated. Everything worthwhile takes time. Malcolm Gladwell even quantified this idea and concluded that it takes 10,000 hours of practice to become an expert at any craft.

While I can read and comprehend this, I've often struggled with embracing it. The usual questions commence:
Why am I always becoming? When will I be? 

Recently, I met a woman with advanced colon cancer. Because of grueling chemotherapy, she was weak and struggled to ask for Jell-O (the only food she could keep down). Before I left the room, I asked if there was anything else she wanted.

"I don't think so. I think I'm okay just to be." she said.

At one point, she and her doctors believed her illness could kill her. But then, against science, against even her own plans, more time came to her. She survived a risky surgery and slowly began responding to chemotherapy.

"I had already given up. And then, the world just didn't let me."

I thought about her for the entire day.
That night, I went and wrote this in my journal:

Put in your best effort and when you're ready to give up, put in some more. Somehow, the distance between those two spaces isn't as much as we often believe it is. 


  1. SO very true! Perseverance is something that can only be mastered with practice. I hope your birthday was/is/will be the best yet! You have so many wonderful things ahead of you.

  2. It's not! And sometimes it's so close but we just don't see it.

  3. what a wonderfully brave woman. And I love the words of wisdom from your journal entry.

  4. Great post.. very inspirational!
    Happy Birthday!!! :)

  5. She's a courageous woman and offers a powerful lesson. Thanks for sharing that story.

    Happy Birthday to you! Happy Birthday to you!! Happy Birthday dear Saumyaaaaa!!! Happy Birthday to youuuuu!!!! When is your actual birthday? Hope it's a fabulous celebration!!