My New Waiting Bubble
-Shannon Hale, Book of a Thousand Days
It’s been a while since I’ve last written. Since then, I’ve taken my finals, deferred from school, sold my contract, and gone home - and, of course, recieved my mission call. I’ve been assignmed to the Stockholm Sweden Mission and I enter the MTC March 11th. I could never have hoped for anything better than that - not for what it felt like to open the envelope and see that word, that place, in bright black letters on the page.
But now, at home, waiting once again, all I can think is how strange time is. In so many ways it’s about moving from time bubble to time bubble. We live in constant anticipation, waiting for something, always for something. And then it comes like this happy slippery barrier and we slide on over it screaming for happiness, only it just so happens that that it passes too quickly to fully appreciate and it’s only later, after we’ve slid into the next waiting bubble that we think about it all - and about how eager we are for what is yet to come. I guess it’s like what William Wordsworth says about poetry: it stems from extreme emotion remembered calmly afterward, “flash[ing] upon the inner eye, which is the bliss of solitude” (”Daffodils” ll. 21-22).
So I spend my new waiting bubble in Palmdale and go to my own little Joshua Tree Walden to think - to remember and to anticipate anew all the periods of waiting behind and beyond where I now stand. And when waiting gets hardest, I think with Keats on the beauty of the world, which is beauty of all kinds - and how all of those kinds, even “Beauty that must die” (Keats, “Ode on Melancholy” l. 21) is still “a joy forever” (”A Thing of Beauty” l. 1) and a truth all its own.