The Art of Expectation


by Rita Angleró

I took a glimpse out of the wooden, double-pane colonial door that led the entrance of the renovated apartment building. It was one of those days the sky is sparkling blue and white clouds slowly dance across it. It was a perfect day to spend with my family in one of my favorite places, Old San Juan. This walking city has an undeniable magic that arouses each of my senses. The greyish-blue cobble streets, picturesque Spanish-style buildings, and trendy food joints and restaurants are all part of its unique ambience. It was a normal Sunday outside strolling through the city, relaxing and catching up with my loved ones. I happily sat under a small umbrella outside a restaurant and ordered not one, but two plates of mussels. I usually don’t eat mussels, but that day I was craving them. After finishing my mussel eating spree I stood up from the table and felt a sharp pain near my stomach. My body had been feeling kind of lousy the past few days, and I suspected something was going on.

Image courtesy of Rita Angleró.

Image courtesy of Rita Angleró.

The next day, as soon as I got out of work, I went to the nearest pharmacy in order to validate my suspicion. I bought a pregnancy test. The most unforgettable thing occurred as I drove home. It was 6 pm during the month of October and the sun was shining strong in the island. I saw what I can describe as a falling star in the sky, right in front of my eyes. It was a breathtaking moment. There was no need for a pregnancy test, at this point I knew I was expecting.

The word expectation is so powerful. It hints to the occurrence of an event, but it does not reveal what the outcome will be. Expecting something to happen will ignite within us a variety of feelings such as happiness, anxiety, stress, and even sadness. If you think carefully about it we are always living under the expectation of something to happen. It might be meeting someone, visiting a foreign place, starting a new job, reading the latest best-seller, pursuing a life-long passion, or expecting a child.

Expecting something to happen does not occur as an isolated incident, it is a beautiful life-altering process we need to learn to embrace with heart and soul. The most interesting part of this process is that we will usually have a preference of what we would like the outcome to be. As examples, (1) “I wish he is a handsome, children loving, athletic man that loves dogs and his momma”, (2) “I hope I love the food during my vacation!”, (3) “I hope all my co-workers are welcoming and invite me to lunch.”,(4) I heard this is a great book, so I guess I’m going to love it.”, (4) “I’m not sure if this new venture I’m starting will end up being successful.”, (5) “I don’t care if it’s a boy or a girl, I just want a healthy, vibrant baby”.

We’ll always have expectations about how we want things to turn out in our lives. That day in old San Juan I didn’t know that I was expecting a new life inside of me.  This new life would lift my soul into a whole new level of love, compassion, and empathy. The most vital compromise we can make to ourselves through this “waiting process” is to feel empowered and internalize that the outcome, whatever it is, will continue to shape the most profound qualities of our character.

Rita Angleró lives in Puerto Rico. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Industrial Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University. She is a wife, mother, and engineer who embraces the beautiful art of translating feelings and experiences into words. She loves writing spirit-lifting, thought-provoking non-fictional accounts that provide the reader time for personal introspection and joyful insights into the perks of life. She loves spending time with her family in the beach or countryside, and enjoys cooking. One of her most desired goals is to publish a book she is currently writing.