Over my many years in the classroom, I developed patience. I saw over and over how things could evolve if I just left them alone, how an intractable student could mellow out (yeah, I’m in that generation) all on his/her own. I realized there’s just no way to force an outcome. This all happened without my even noticing it, believing I was, as my mom always said, “So impatient, Martha Ann! Learn a little patience!” Then one day one of my students said, “I don’t see how you can be so patient, Professor, I’d be, I don’t know. Apeshit. Sorry.”
“Ah, well, you guys have a hard job here. You’re doing things you never did before. You’re afraid you won’t succeed. There’s a lot of stuff you’re going through right now that I’m not. You just have to do it, and I have to help you.”
At that moment I realized that I’d become patient. When and how, I have no idea, but I’m glad.