The Beauty of Waiting for Good Things to Come
One of the hardest things to master in life is patience—being comfortable with waiting for good things to come. Waiting isn’t idling. It’s the process of discovering.
My family visited the castle in the summer of 2016 and took many photos from the nearby Marienbrücke, or Marien Bridge. Below is a photo of the castle from @neuschwanstein.castle on Instagram.
While we were there at noon, the bridge was packed with tourists eager to get the perfect shot. Under the relentless summer sun, everyone became impatient as we slowly inched through the crowd on the narrow bridge.
My son was hungry and tired, so we sat against the bridge barrier for a break. A man resting two feet across from us offered him an energy bar. We thanked him. Seeing the three camera bags and a tripod next to him, I asked if he was a professional photographer on an assignment. He said yes. He planned to wait until sunset when most tourists cleared off the bridge, and the golden light illuminated the magnificent castle.
“It takes a lot of patience and discipline,” I said.
“Yeah, all good things take time. Most people rush about, snap a photo here and there without seeing the details.”
I asked, on average, how long it took him to get a good shot.
“It depends,” he said. “Sometimes takes a whole day. Sometimes days, even weeks.”
“What do you do when you wait for the perfect photo? Don’t you get bored?” I asked.
He shook his head. “If you look close enough, everything has its own beauty. Waiting is the process of discovering, one minute at a time.”
In 2020, I had a serious horse-riding accident that led to various complications and chronic pain. For many months, I couldn’t manage even the most basic daily activities. Each day was long and gray. As someone who valued productivity above all else, I was miserable.
My aching body forced me to slow down, and I did, grudgingly first, then more readily. I became patient with myself and the people around me. Patience gave me the capacity to appreciate all the things I’d missed in the past. I took singing lessons online to feel good; picked up Qigong to gain strength and balance; learned chess to improve my memory. These things I’d never have done if not for my injuries.
These seemingly ‘unproductive’ activities brought colors to my otherwise long and gray days. I became comfortable waiting for things to get better and used that process to discover new perspectives.
Recently, I cut down on my work hours to enjoy life at a slower pace. As the photographer said, one minute at a time.