When I was younger, up until my very late teens (and early adulthood, I should just start off by being honest), I was known for my impatience; ‘Kitt will leave you if you’re not on time’, ‘Kitt is never going to agree to wait’, ‘Hurry up, Kitt will kill us if we’re late’, are phrases I heard time and again from my family and friends. I didn’t really care. It felt good to be known, even feared, for something. That was who I was and I was proud.
Then I met my husband.
Martin is the kind of person, God bless him, who will not worry about being somewhere at 10:00 am when he’s sitting in his house at 9:30 am. ‘I’ll just call ahead and let them know I’m running late’ and ‘It’s definitely not going to start on time’ are his mantras. It is as if he is allergic to ever getting somewhere on time, using the bathroom, having a drink of water and resting for 5 minutes before the meeting starts.
So early on in our relationship, we had an uncountable number of fights about being ‘always late’ and about ‘always having to wait for you’ and ‘why must you always be somewhere 3 hours early’, and so on.
Then came Kendi.
A comedian I was watching earlier this week, was describing how people who don’t have children leave the house- they suggest leaving the house to one another, decide if they want to leave, and then leave. That process is basically 300% more difficult for people who have children. Patience is the key.
And when the children can walk and talk and say ,’no no no’, that process becomes even more difficult.
‘Kendi, bi irwak woche, wadhi kanisa‘ (Come put on your shoes, we’re going to church), becomes, ‘please mama. Wow, smart shoes. Arwako woche gi (I’m wearing your shoes)’
I beg, I threaten, I plead, I bribe. But most of all, I wait. Because the moment Kendi thinks I’m in a hurry, we are never going to leave the house.
Martin taught me patience but Kendi really reinforced that lesson. I wait for her when she’s using the potty, I wait for her to put on her shoes/ sweater (all the time), I wait for her while she sleeps in the car at the supermarket, because if I interrupt her nap, there’s no point going in, I wait for her to finish eating (on her own), I wait for her to carry the bag through the mall (with absolutely no help from me) and I wait for her to climb all 6 flights of stairs to our home on the 3rd floor because she will accept no help.
I wait for Kendi and I’m happy to wait.