I am not, by nature, a very patient person. I have learned patience through the years, and I am still learning. I have been blessed with 6 full-term pregnancies. With most of these pregnancies, I went 2 weeks “overdue”…my shortest labor being 10 hours. I learned a lot during those last few weeks and hours. People assumed that I was ignorant to the fact that, with modern medicine, I could schedule a c-section or “get started” with pitocin. People then assumed that I was a masochist when I explained that I knew I could be drugged up the entire time, but that I sincerely wanted to give birth as naturally as possible. And I am certain that people assumed I was crazy when I informed them that Simon was going to be born at home after having an unnecessarian with Ryan in the hospital. People assume too much. The irony of it all….the patience I have learned was not due to waiting 2 weeks longer than textbooks said I needed to, nor was it learned with having labor last up to 2 days. The patience that I had to develop was with those who didn’t understand me, or my intentions, even though I tried my very best to share with them.
So, you are asking yourself, what do a bus conversion, an extended service mission to Central America and my pregnancies have in common? I have been thinking a lot this past week about how things have changed recently. I have gone through so many emotions….first shock, then anger, then sadness, and finally gratitude. Through it all, I have had to really look deep within, to realign my way of thinking and my expectations. I have had to trust in the Lord and His plan and let go of my fear and frustration. Where am I now? Here is what I am feeling and thinking….
1) All is not lost. I am thankful that, despite the trip not happening as I had planned, we are still able to have an opportunity to go down to Central America. We still have a bus, our home, our family…remembering this always helps me to gain a better perspective.
2) Good planning is half the battle. Now that we aren’t leaving as early, we have more time to plan it out well (and did I mention that I like to plan?).
3) Charity never faileth. Because of being able to plan better, we will be able to have a set course of action, and this will help us to utilize the time that we wil be helping with service missions. Also, this will allow us to be available for more service missions than we had previously hoped for. Having everything carefully planned out will enable us to have some extra time to spend in Costa Rica, when we are done serving, before we are ready to head back to the states. Yes!
4) Timing is everything. I am sure that we were not meant to leave in October. I have been looking at weather patterns in Central America. Late summer to early winter is actually the wettest time for them (hence, all of the hurricanes and mudslides they have been encountering lately). We want to avoid being stuck in the mud as much as possible while traveling through Central America. What good are we to those in need if we are the ones needing all of the help while down there?
5) Patience is a virtue. While I agree that deadlines/due dates can be useful for helping you to stop procrastinating and get the job done or to keep you from getting food poisoning, I have also found that these are frequently used by those who can’t trust themselves or others to follow through (and by others, particularly OBs and grocery store stockers, for convenience and a *false* sense of security). At first I agreed that if we didn’t have a deadline, we would never get the bus conversion done or leave on our trip. I now realize that the deadline we had set only made me feel more stressed. I have also come to the conclusion that I have a real issue with deadlines and due dates. While I am a planner and a lover of organization, I am still a free spirit. I am also an avid goal setter. My goal is to get Liahona completed by the end of the year and to visit Central America with my husband and 6 kids by the end of next summer. Sure, there will be specific dates that service missions will be happening and there will be coordinating that will take place, but the rest is up to me to plan and create. 😉
I would love to commit to a time right this very minute, to say that I have it all figured out and it will all go as planned. But, like my pregnancies, some of the fun is waiting until it happens all on its own. Just like I have had to learn patience in my pregnancies, I will have to learn patience with Liahona and our Aventuras…after all, good things come to those who wait.
La paciencia es una virtud.
p.s. The lovely photograph of my big belly was done by one of my most favorite people in the world, Joanna. She always amazes me…as does her photography. 😉