Making Bread Reminds Me of the Virtue of Patience
It was mid-2020, and I was in an especially stressed out and overactive state. My boyfriend had just finished work and, in an effort to relax, called me over. He put his arms around me tenderly, and presented me with a challenge: Was I capable of lying down with him for a little bit, without jumping up to attend to some chores?
It might sound like an easy enough request to abide by, but since I was a little girl, I have not been able to sit still for more than a minute without fidgeting. It’s some ADHD shit for sure, but my inability to chill out also comes from being afraid of sitting with my own thoughts. After what felt like an eternity but was probably only two minutes — oscillating between losing myself in the niceness of my boyfriend’s warm arms, worrying about the next six items on my to-do list, planning out the meal I was about to cook, and feeling deep shame over something stupid I said a decade ago — I caved. I began to whine about how I wanted to make dinner and before I knew it, I was on my feet, making a mad dash to the kitchen.
Patience is good. It’s a virtue I’m forever working on nurturing, since living in a perpetual state of restlessness is not sustainable. Remembering to be patient takes work.
In my early 20s, I discovered that I could use my disquietude for personal gain, and tumbled head first into the attention economy. I assumed the role of an impulsive, bombastic Twitter personality, and found a home in an industry (digital media) that encouraged self-exploitation, loudness, and general thoughtlessness. If I had a germ of an idea, I wouldn’t marinate on it, but instead, fire out some half-formed thoughts to the public, and evaluate whether it had any merit at a later date.
This boldness helped me develop my career, for sure, but it has also left me with regret. There are articles bearing my byline that make arguments I do not stand by. (“This Penis Latte Art Is Everything”? Unlikely story. “America Needs Sean Spicer on ‘Dancing with the Stars’”? I think not. “James Corden’s Apple Music Ad Is So Bad, I’m Cancelling My Subscription”? Six years later, and I’m still a subscriber.) If I think too hard about all the ways I’ve embarrassed myself on the internet, I want to…