Patience is not my virtue

It’s been two weeks and counting. I’m still waiting to hear the outcome of the job interview. Now is an opportunity to practice a virtue that is not my strong point: patience.

The ancient Greek word for patience is hupomoné (ὑπομονή) from hypo meaning “under” and moné from the verb meno meaning “to stay, remain or endure”.

“Staying under” seems like an appropriate definition of patience. The yoke is firmly attached and one just has to keep plodding on in the direction of one’s aim. If I throw off the yoke, abandon the task and walk out in contempt, the opportunity to practice patience has been lost.

Are there any fables about patience to guide me? Perhaps this one:

The Fox with the Swollen Belly.

A hungry fox spied some bread and meat left in a hollow tree by some shepherds. He crawled in and ate it, but his belly swelled so that could not get out again. As he moaned and groaned, another fox passing by came up and asked what was the matter. When he heard what had happened, he said to the first fox. “I guess you’ll just have to wait. When your belly goes back to it’s original size, you won’t have any trouble getting out.” (1)

It’s time for me to stop moaning and groaning. Time fixes everything.

(1) Adapted from Lloyd W. Daly, Aesop Without Morals, Thomas Yoseloff, New York, 1961, p. 103.

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