This week I got approval and funding for a project that I've been pitching for a year. A solid year of effort, and beating a drum that most had no interest in hearing. For the past year, I've felt alternately foolish and hopeful. One minute I thought I just didn't get it, couldn't see past my own stubbornness. The next minute I'd think, no, it's everyone else who doesn't get it.
I now realize that it wasn't a matter of people getting it; it was entirely a matter of timing and circumstances. I wanted an idea to flourish ahead of its time. Had I gotten approval a year ago for it, the idea would have crashed and burned, no doubt about it. And then I would not have only felt foolish - I would have looked foolish, too.
The universe tries to protect us from ourselves. It throws down roadblocks to test our passion and perseverance, and also to give the rest of the world time to catch up with us. At the time that I first developed the idea, I didn't see it that way. I was so willing to toot my own horn, thinking that I knew something others around me didn't. In reality, the universe was saving me from me. It's a difficult, necessary lesson to learn; when the path is cluttered with resistance, it really is best to wait it out with quiet strength.
This is not to say that we should all zip it and go stand in line waiting for our turn. I still maintain that it takes the ability to step up and out for an idea we believe in that really creates progress. However, the next time a project is not going exactly according to plan, I'll have more patience with myself and with those around me. If the idea's a good one, it's time will come. Perhaps not on the schedule I'd like, though at the time when it has the greatest chance to not only survive but thrive.