Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Waiting Place

Reflecting on the past few years, I feel like a part of me has been stuck in “the waiting place,” you know from Dr. Seuss’ “Oh the Places You Will Go.” 

The Waiting Place…

…for people just waiting.

Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come,
or a plane to go or the mail to come,
 or the rain to go or the phone to ring,
 or the snow to snow or waiting around for a

Yes or a No or waiting for their hair to grow.

Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for
 Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil,
or a Better Break
or a sting of pearls,
or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls,
 or Another Chance.

Everyone is just waiting.

NO!  That’s not for you!

Somehow you’ll escape all that waiting and staying.

You’ll find the bright places

where Boom Bands are playing.

Ted Geisel, AKA Dr. Seuss, wrote this in 1990, his last published book, two years before I was “waiting” to graduate from high school.  In fact, during spring graduation in the US and Canada this book is a top gift for graduates selling 300,000 copies a year.  I gave it to a friend graduating from a different institution, a rehab facility, several years back hoping it would help inspire him to follow the straight and narrow, but alas, to no avail. 

But back to me, because that’s what this blog is about, right?  Why do I feel like I’ve been in the Waiting Place? 

Several years ago I had a wonderful job, a husband in law school and a new baby boy.  I wanted more time with my family and became impatient and when an opportunity to leave the great job popped up, I took it.  Later, it’s a move I regretted although the path it took me down hasn’t been all bad, just full of challenges and that’s why I’m thankful that God is kind and merciful and that, despite our best efforts to derail things, all things do work together for good and my family has been bless regardless of my recklessness on the job front. 

But I feel like the past two years I have been waiting—waiting for that next opportunity to open up.  Waiting for the big break financially.  Waiting for something to happen that will take us to the next level of our lives.  Bigger house sure would be nice.  Being able to repair a car or not dreading the next home improvement would sure be a load off our minds.  And yet when these things happen, somehow, we are able to cope and get through the crisis.  Somehow when I want flowers to fill the pots on the deck we find the money to do it.  When we want to have a night out with friends, childcare and money materializes.  I know we are blessed.  I am thankful. 

I took up photography, a lifelong hobby, after the last job.  I’m glad to have a skill I can use to make people happy.  My clients aren’t the super rich, more folks like me who like to DIY (do it yourself) and will save up for a photo shoot with the promise of the disk of images so that they can make scrapbooks or take their photos to the Wal-Mart for processing.  Some of my photography colleagues, especially those in a group I’m part of, really give me grief about my photo packages because I “give my work away” and “your pictures will look like s*#t if you don’t sell prints and let clients print anywhere they want.”  And yet, if I charged what they do, I would be in competition with those very photographers (stress!) and miss out on the very dear clients whom I’ve come to call friends too (bliss!).      

I’ll be honest, in the past two or so years things haven’t always been a piece of cake and so I’ve looked for full or part time jobs; I’ve probably submitted 50-75 resumes, I’ve honestly lost count, with a grand total of about three interviews, two of which were arranged by good-intentioned friends.  I have a pretty solid work history, great references and good skills to back up my Bachelor of Science degree.  Yet, often my resume is swept aside, sometimes if it’s an online thing, I’ll go back and see that the hiring company never even opened my files.  Discouraging?  You bet!  And so I over-commit in my personal life—more PTA volunteering, more community events, the best darned birthday party a kid ever had, sure I can make those calls for you, and so on and so fourth until my family (or doctor) says, “ENOUGH!”     

Even so, I feel like I keep looking to God and saying, “What next?  Why am I in this Waiting Place?  Haven’t I learned whatever lesson it is already?”  Apparently no.  Apparently God isn’t through with Miss Me yet.  I have a lot to learn despite my years.  So while I’m in the Waiting Place, I’ve decided to take a look around and pick up the reading materials and maybe meet a few friends in the lobby.  To that end, a few weeks ago a friend, who has become a mentor in so many ways, invited me to Bible Study.  I know she has been in the Waiting Place many times in her life and so I picked up my reading materials and here we go.  I think it’s the next step in getting through the Waiting Place.  On another front, a start up business has asked me for some help.  It’s ok, they can’t pay me yet, but “free-lancing” for someone who is full of gratitude and praise makes this Waiting Place cozier.  Maybe I will learn something in this Waiting Place after all which will help to guild me on the long journey of life.    

In the background, I hear “Little Wonders” by Rob Thomas, the song written for the Disney film “Meet the Robinsons” but it’s a good soundtrack for the Waiting Place.  I’ll keep waiting.  I’ll keep learning.  I’ll keep listening. 

let it go,
let it roll right off your shoulder
don’t you know
the hardest part is over
let it in,
let your clarity define you
in the end
we will only just remember how it feels

our lives are made
in these small hours
these little wonders,
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away,
but these small hours,
these small hours still remain

let it slide,
let your troubles fall behind you
let it shine
until you feel it all around you
and i don’t mind
if it’s me you need to turn to
we’ll get by,
it’s the heart that really matters in the end

our lives are made
in these small hours
these little wonders,
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away,
but these small hours,
these small hours still remain

all of my regret
will wash away some how
but i can not forget
the way i feel right now

in these small hours
these little wonders
these twists & turns of fate
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away but these small hours
these small hours, still remain,
still remain
these little wonders
these twists & turns of fate
time falls away
but these small hours
these little wonders still remain


  1. I'm right there with you, Mandy. How did I miss you here?

    Prayers for blessings and a glimpse at the next place.


    1. Thanks! I know it's a place full of fine folks and good lessons, if only we look and listen. :)