Patience is passion…

In her book, Doubt: A History, Jennifer Michael Hecht writes that “life is good, but in order to live well one must study one’s own psychology with patience and intensity.”

I consider myself a patient man and I’ve never shied away from critically examining myself and my own inner workings with intense scrutiny, but if I’m honest, the past few years, and this year especially, has tested my patience…hard.

At the risk of sounding pompous or arrogant, two things I have a desperate disdain for, I’ve always felt like I had something important to do; a mission, a purpose, like I was meant for “more”…whatever that means.  Maybe that’s the unrealistic idealism of a youthful naivete that I should have outgrown long ago, but maybe it’s not. Maybe it’s true…

Even after years of failure, faltering, and false-starts, that feeling has never left, but its gotten harder to hold on to, and increasingly difficult to believe in.

And yet…I still want to. I want to believe but…it hurts. It hurts to have hope. In some inexplicably fucked up way, it hurts to dream. It’s the painful ache of an atrophied muscle grown cold and brittle from disuse.

Somedays I wonder how much fight have left. I’m weary from a battle that I can’t see an end to. But, I think of something Steven Pressfield said: “The professional arms himself with patience” (*my emphasis added).  Patience is not the tepid timidity of a church mouse. It is the girded armor of one preparing to go to war. Patience is passion.

We are all too familiar with the wild imagery of passion equated with the enveloping experience of the ecstatic , but what if real passion is the persistent patience practiced within the working…


  1. Pingback: Failure perfected... - Duane Toops

  2. Pingback: Art is the gift of giving ourselves... - Duane Toops

  3. Pingback: A search to see the light... - Duane Toops

  4. Pingback: the space between... - Duane Toops

  5. Pingback: yearning to be whole... - Duane Toops

  6. Pingback: When there's nothing... - Duane Toops

  7. Pingback: What I believe about (not) writing... - Duane Toops

Comments are closed.

Back to Top