Patience is a recurring melody of my life. I’m either whispering the word to my toddler, praying for some myself, admiring it in other people, or wondering how we’ve become such a culture of criticism, arguing that no one knows how to wait anymore. I’m certain I’m not alone in singing the song of patience. Contrary to what the media constantly circulates, I really don’t believe that we all just live for instant gratification all the time.
I still remember watching our coach tally the votes that the other seniors and I had cast for president of our high school speech and debate team over a decade ago. I don’t remember what the club president’s role involved, all I can recall is that I wanted to lead my team. I really wanted to lead my team.
My fingers were crossed under my desk. My backpack was limp by my side—the biggest assignment I had in those first days of school was to write and memorize the speech I wanted to compete with. I’d chosen (and really, this is probably no surprise to this online community) to compose a 10 minute speech about unsung heroes and their impact on our lives.
My toddler son, Niklas, is learning German words like “Elefant” and “Schuh.” They’re easier for him to grasp because he’s also attempting the English equivalents.
There is no translation for the German word I want to use, though.
It sounds like a train chugging up a hill. Clickity clack, clickity clack. The meaning of the word, however, gives you the opposite feel. Gemütlichkeit is like the word cozy, but it goes a dozen step further. Snuggling under a blanket while you sit in a camping chair by the campfire is cozy. Gemütlichkeit is surrounding yourself with close friends, a bottle of beer, s’mores, and lots of happy stories and jokes while you snuggle in your blanket by the campfire.