I’ll start by answering the question posed a few posts ago: “Are you ready?” No, I’m not. I wasn’t ready last Wednesday, and I’m not ready now. But the last few days have shown me that being ready is perhaps a less important quality in parenting than being flexible and patient. An expert I’m not. I’m a parent primarily by definition. Still I’m hoping the lesson in patience and flexibility pays off in the long term, because I am learning it abundantly now.
|Icon of St. Simeon the God Receiver, by the hand of Cheryl Pituch|
As you have read, we have spent a lot of time waiting, traveling, visiting, washing hands, smiling, snapping photos, recovering, and depriving ourselves of sleep in the last few days. No surgery has been on time as planned, and the first took several hours longer than expected. Nevertheless, all procedures have proceeded. All rounds have rounded. I can’t help projecting this to our future as a family. Flexibility and patience. A kind social worker at the hospital once told us that Simeon will be able to do whatever anyone else can do, just perhaps differently. I liked to hear that, and I believe it’s true. I also thought about how important patience must be in working into that truth. Along with his faith, the outstanding virtue of St. Simeon the God-Receiver was patience. As my friend reminded me, in Church tradition he was 360 years old before he saw Christ. I don’t want to wait like that, I usually don’t want to wait at all, but I look to that example for peace and patience in uncertain situations (like, say, fatherhood). Like the saint, I hope my Simeon has patience with us, himself, and others. If we practice a little of it around him now, maybe he can pick up on it later.