Patient Acceptance

One of my greatest conflicts is worrying over Nathan’s future. Will he walk? Will he talk? The chances are slim, I know that. But should I give up hope? Should I give up the wish that maybe one day he will? It seems that accepting this would be defeatist, it would mean giving up hope. Should I be a realist and not kid myself? If I gave up hope would I still give him a chance? Would I do everything to maximize that possibility?

Then I think of the odds he beat by being alive. 3% chance of surviving. Yet not only did he survive, he is thriving, he is in good health and has such a strong, beautiful spirit. I hoped he would live. I never gave up hoping. And here he is.

So should I give up hoping that he will develop? And then the bigger question yet is, so what if he doesn’t?

It’s like trying to predict the end of a dream. A dream may be following a certain script, then in the next moment it completely changes. Isn’t it the same?

So why should I give up the dream that he will one day walk and talk? In and of themselves dreams are worth experiencing. Most of our dreams may not become reality, but we enjoy having them, they give us hope, enjoyment, excitement. We may dream of travelling, of attaining a high position, of becoming millionaires. It may not be likely, but we dream anyways. What is life without dreams? It is dreams that help us strive, the vision that motivates us to change and improve ourselves.

The vision is what an architect sees before he creates his plans for a building. It is the vision that guides us. We can hold the vision and strive towards it. Yet at the same time we need to accept. Accept that the vision may not ever become the reality. Accept that the present may be different from the vision that we wish for. And not only do we need to accept, we need to be happy with the present, regardless of what it comes with.

So we must have the dream while accepting whatever arises in the present.

Patient acceptance is not giving in to a future outcome. It’s not saying, this will happen and it’s okay with me. I don’t have to accept the future of Nathan as a child who will not walk or talk. That future does not exist. It is not prewritten or predestined. The future depends on the present and the present is being created every moment. So patient acceptance does not mean passively accepting things that have not happened.

Patient acceptance means accepting the present. Warmly welcoming things that arise every moment. It means allowing ourselves to fully experience every moment, to open our hearts to it, and embrace it without fear or negativity.

This moment I accept Nathan just as he is. Whether he walks or talks is not of interest to me at this moment. This moment he is Nathan and he is perfect.

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