“Patience is a virtue.” These four words are said all the time. I even find myself using them an annoying amount of times.
But what exactly is patience? I know people who can sit for hours waiting for a deer to walk in front of their scope but cannot handle a room of excited children, and I know people who are just the opposite. In light of Easter and all the goodwill fostered by the holiday (even for those who do not have religious ties, I might add), I will be talking about how I divide the different types of patience.
This is the type of patience practiced by first grade teachers and security at overloaded concerts. When you can handle massive quantities of people, whether children or adults, acting irrationally insane, you are a master of annoyance patience. This type of patience features individuals who can put up with excruciating amounts of noise, chaos, and general insanity without snapping and either swearing at a child or quitting your job. All of you bouncers, teachers, day care providers, and fair employees are awesome. You are the people who can prevail while your immediate world is literally exploding.
This type of patience can be seen in the people who deal with the most ignorant and frustrating people out there, especially online. Some people either will not or cannot admit when they are wrong about something. The individuals with idiocratic patience are the once who gently and maturely attempt to educate these people, despite their incapabilities. When someone is telling a ‘fact’ that is incredibly flawed, and you attempt to show them the truth without getting angry or calling them stupid, that takes a level of patience many do not have. A certain amount of human decency and respect must color the kind of person who can avoid being upset while correcting another human. People with this type of patience are blessings on this earth, and should be treated as such.
This is the patience of trained killers. It is possessed by snipers, spies, hunters, assassins, and the lifeguards. Okay, so lifeguards are not actually trained killers; they’re trained savers. But the patience is the same. You see, this type of patience is characterized by doing nothing for a long period of time because you are waiting for something to happen. That something could be someone flailing desperately in the water or the level of access you have been waiting years to access finally appears and you can end that one evil person’s reign of terror. Either way, you’re doing a lot of seemingly meaningless nothings to achieve that one big something. If you have this patience, you could be a totally kick-butt assassin and should feel very special.
Note: I realize that there are a dozen of examples that do not result in death, but I am feeling particularly gory while typing this. I’m not actually totally evil, I promise.
This is the kind of patience seen by those who believe that good things come with time. These people meditate instead of freaking out because their paycheck is one day late. These people are content that everything they need in life will be accessible to them when they need it. These are the people who don’t try to rush through the less-pleasurable aspects of their existence because they can wait for the better times to come while appreciating what they have in the present. I find these people the most admirable because they are so comfortable with their humanity. They are cool as a cucumber floating on wild oceans of life, and I think that is a really important trait to have.
On a lower level, this is also the patience of those children who wait patiently for Easter morning when the Easter Bunny will bring them brightly colored eggs, candy, and other goodies to find and consume. Please note that these are not the children who sit there complaining constantly.
I like to think I have a healthy balance of all four of these patiences, but I am sure that is not true.
What kind of patience do you feel is most applicable to your personality? Do you simple have no patience at all? Let me know in the comments!