Let me be honest with you. If there is one serious character flaw that I should work on, it is my lack of patience. I just don’t have the patience gene.
This is one reason why my wife, Moira, is such a perfect partner for me. She has a deeper well of patience than I do. Trevor, my longtime co-worker here at the Conservancy, is also a shining example of how to be patient. Where I often act impulsively to move on to the next thing, Trevor is the guy who spent a full year looking at canoes to buy with a new canoe rack freshly installed on his car, only to ultimately decide that canoe ownership wasn’t for him!
In other words, I surround myself with people that can dampen my intensity and keep me thinking long-range. A few weeks ago, I decided that I needed to take on a comprehensive re-seeding of my lawn here in Bay City. It needed it as the summer dry spell and an infiltration of creeping weeds had knocked my grass down for the count. Well, nothing requires patience like watching grass grow!
I took it as a challenge and decided to savor the process.
I was rewarded with the opportunity to do it right and not rush anything. I seeded at the optimal time, at the optimal rate, with the optimal seed. I watered it according to a strict schedule, and today the lawn is coming in nicely. If I had not practiced patience, I may have cut corners or avoided the project altogether.
Conservation requires patience in many forms. This week, we learned that the wolf population on Isle Royale grew a little with new pups being born, a very rare occurrence after generations of conservation work there.
Restoration, too, requires patience. For the past five years, we have been working in overdrive to restore blighted land to wildflower prairie, plant new trees on nature preserves, and beat back invasive plants on our conserved lands. These tasks require careful planning and long-range thinking. They literally require you to watch plants grow.
I want you to know how much we appreciate your patience with us in the most unusual year. I want to say thank you for your support after our most recent appeal, which is still ongoing. About eight years ago, we set out to build the SBLC into a healthier, more resilient, more relevant organization. We set out to make the SBLC so crucial to our community that our community would not allow us to fail. When we ask for help these days, you respond, and you will not let us fail. For that, we were patient and we owe you our eternal appreciation.
With hope for our community and an open heart,