Patiently Teaching Ducks To Swim


There are two kinds of change: the change we resist, and the change we long for. When it comes to the changes I am eager for (losing weight, finishing a quilt that’s taken me months of work,  re-organizing my studio), I want instant results. I want to be done yesterday.

Instant changes are rare. Even changes that seem fast, like getting a new hair style or buying a new piece of furniture, are only symbolic of the deeper changes we are interested in, the slow below-the-surface changes we are trying to announce to the world with our new frills.

Lately, I’ve been dealing with things that take much more time than I would like. Healing my body is a slow process, and while I am making the recommended changes, my body seems to be in no hurry to respond. Staying patient as I go through this process is proving tough.

Fortunately, I came across this quote:

One does not advance the swimming abilities of ducks by throwing the eggs in the water. — Eduard Douwes Dekker

The insanity of teaching a duck to swim while it’s still in the egg makes this a powerful statement for me. I’m reminded that some change has steps to it, and that progress can only occur if the steps are followed in the proper order. You can’t jump ahead and expect good results.

My healing is going to take time. Today, I’m leaving the eggs in the nest. I’m making sure that they are warm and safe, and giving them the time they need to develop. Swimming lessons can wait until after they’ve hatched and grown feathers. I will leave each step to its appropriate time and wait until it’s complete before I move on to the next thing.

All I have to do is wait. Patiently.

2 thoughts on “Patiently Teaching Ducks To Swim”

  1. Waiting is difficult for me. I have the concentration time of a gnat. Buzz, gone, buzz, gone.

    1. As soon as I finished this post, I went into Totally Impatient Land. I write this stuff to help remind myself of my goal, but I don’t always achieve it. 😉

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