fragmented.ME …
mind * body * soul ...

the waiting place …

The waiting place; the place where everyone is always waiting for something to happen or for things to change.

I started to think about this after I saw the following quote in my journal notebook (Knock Knock, 2013), where it said, ‘real growth often happens outside of where we intend it to, in the interstitial spaces — what Dr. Seuss calls the waiting place’.<ref>Knock Knock  (2013) I’m Doing My Best, Venice, Knock Knock.</ref>

It really struck a cord with me on a soul level. We do often grow whilst we’re waiting for something to change or happen. It moved me to the point of searching out the whole book so I could read the quote in context. The idea of the waiting place is taken from the book entitled, Oh, The Places You’ll Go! (Seuss, 1990)<ref>Seuss, Dr. (1990) Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, New York, Random House.</ref>.

Of course being me, if you know you know, I perused the whole story several times and I found that I was particularly moved by the part quoted below and so I wanted to delve deeper and share my thoughts with you too.

  Oh, the places you’ll go!   
  — Dr Seuss  

the waiting place …

In his book Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, Dr Seuss writes the following, (Seuss, 1990, pp.31-34)<ref>Seuss, Dr. (1990) Oh, The Places You’ll Go!, New York, Random House.</ref>

You can get so confuse
that you’ll start in to race
down the long road at a break-necking pace
and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space,
headed, I fear, toward a most useless place.

The Waiting Place …

… for people just waiting.
Waiting for a train to go
or a bus to come, or a plane to go
or the mail to come, or the rain to go
or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow
or waiting around for a Yes or a No
or waiting for their hair to grow.
Everyone is just waiting.

Waiting for the fish to bite
or waiting for wind to fly a kite
or waiting around for Friday night
or waiting, perhaps, for their Uncle Jake
or a pot to boil, or a Better Break
or a string of pearls, or a pair of pants
or a wig with curls, or Another Chance.
Everyone is just waiting.

That’s not for you!

(Seuss, 2009, pp. 31-34) …

what is the waiting place …

On the whole, the book is really quite symbolic of the journey of life and the ups and downs we will encounter in our own personal life journey. Oh and the waiting … the waiting place that we will surely find ourselves in … many times …

My overall interpretation of the waiting place is that it appears to be an allegory and a place were you can maybe grow spiritually, if you wish to, or if you can use it to your advantage, and especially if your life journey keeps you there, as it does when you’re chronically sick.

However, it appears that Dr. Seuss is using it as somewhere that people are in their emotional state; a place where people are their emotional state; they are life’s crossroads, the state of being lost, unmotivated and confused. They are just waiting. (Shmoop Editorial Team, 2008)<ref>Shmoop Editorial Team. (2008). ‘The Waiting Place in Oh, the Places You’ll Go!’, shmoop, 11 November [Blog]. Available at: (Accessed: 3 March 2022).</ref>

This all feels very apt for someone with ME who never goes anywhere or does anything, but seems to be always in the waiting place; waiting for recovery and to get well; waiting for better days; waiting for tests and for treatments; always waiting … a never ending wait.

my interpretations …

So firstly, I was moved to write a haiku to summarise one of my understandings of the waiting place (Mijatovic, 2022)<ref>Mijatovic, D. (2022) Haiku for Healing, (to be published).</ref>.

in the waiting place
time moving ever so slow
it’s where you can grow
— Denise Mijatovic (2022)

Secondly, I wanted to delve as deeply as I could in order to look at the waiting place and what else it could mean in order to grow.

my further interpretations …

As a person with severe ME, fibromyalgia, chronic migraine, and chronic pain, I find myself spending a lot of time waiting.

waiting for …

medications to work

symptoms to abate

better days to come;
so I can wash myself and wash my hair

have the energy to change my PJs

make appointments and wait to be seen

on hold on the phone
for someone to answer
for someone to help
for test results
for medicines
and for food too


online deliveries
medication deliveries

I could go on
you get the idea

I know you do
especially if you are like me
and you have ME too

If, my waiting list is as never ending and ever growing as it seems then it makes sense to conclude that my growing potential must also be limitless and endless too.

As well, after reading and pondering the meanings in this particular Dr Seuss book, I realised that there are things I can do whilst I’m waiting, which will benefit me. Even if I am waiting for something, like being well again, that might actually never come about, I can still grow …

waiting to be well again …

Being realistic, there is a very good chance that I am not going to recover from my condition, and even if I do I will not be the person I left behind. I have been ill since 1984 and over the years, as well as getting sicker, I have been getting older. To recover aged 25 is an entirely different sate than recovery aged 65.

Being realistic is my middle name.

Moving on, I will next discuss five things I may do whilst waiting for things to happen. I will link them to specific waiting scenarios. However, you will see that they are quite adaptable and so can be used for many different waiting aspects.

while waiting for …
    • my tablets to work: I could, and very often do, use this time to simply breathe; I cover the top of my head and eyes, which always hurt the most, with ice packs, snuggle down, and just breathe … sometimes I will fall back asleep, other times I will go on a mental journey, and on very special day I will actually find peace.
      • I find I often use ‘breathing’ and being mindful in other scenarios which might otherwise put me in a high emotional state and ultimately make my symptoms worse.
    • my energy to replenish so I can do ‘something’ ‘anything’: I find this extremely frustrating, this kind of waiting forces me to face my limitations and it is the one kind of waiting that can make me feel deeply emotional because of all the loss involved in having ME. So, in this case, I might take out my ‘compassion card deck’ and pull a card or two and really dwell on being kind and accepting to myself using the idea on the card. This sort of personal self work really helps me to realise the vulnerability of being so poorly and it humanises my experience. I find I am also a lot more patient and kindly with myself and other ps after I have done some self work.
      • I find that self work makes a huge difference to my overall attitude to the illness and enables me to hang on another bit longer.
    • someone to help: it is hard when you hang on to the end before asking for help and then frustratingly find that the potential helper doesn’t realise how urgently the help and they are now needed. I will often wait to ask for help and so when I do ask I am often at a stage when I cannot help myself.
      • I find to breathe, do something untaxing, or concentrate on something else, the easiest way to handle this. I think it may be a diversion tactic. However, if I do use it, sometimes force myself to do it, I am in danger of triggering adrenaline and ‘helping’ myself because of allowing the frustration to take over. All this means is I am making myself more permanently sicker and takes me closer to becoming terminal. Yes … sadly, ME can turn terminal.
    • deliveries / people to turn up: again it’s the same old thing … waiting … waiting and your adrenaline is often on red alert.
      • I find it useful to watch my driveway through my ring doorbell in my TV screen then I’m not shocked or scared when. The bell goes and I can actually get up slowly when they enter the drive without feeling like I’m keep them waiting. We have nice views as well so it’s very peaceful just looking out while lay on the settee.
    • someone to see you at an appointment: this situation is very stressful for most of us with ME. We’ve been gaslit and traumatised through the year regarding our illness and seeing medical people, which is the only reason I leave the house, often re-triggers those awful feelings linked with years and years of medical abuse.
      • I find taking my kindle and reading helps or putting earphones in and listening to soothing sounds or music. Whatever makes you feels less stressed or brings you the most peace. Anything … as long as you’re not going over what to say, what can go wrong, blah blah blah … you know the scenario.
waiting for the inevitable …

On a more sad, possibly sinister, yet very realistic note. Am I waiting to die … probably … but I do feel I can still feel valuable and worthy while I wait.

That said, or even thought, isn’t everyone waiting to die. It’s just that some of us are a lot more aware of our frailties.

I find it’s better to be real than in denial. Remember, no one knows the hour or day in which they will die and so make the most of what you get regardless of anything.

That is how I want to use my words, here on this website; as an escape back to life. I wanted to engulf myself in website and it’s words to become whole again, if at all possible.

I’m alive now, but I don’t know if I will be tomorrow.
The state of being alive is not guaranteed,
but should I let that stop me from living?
— Author: Innocent Mwatsikesimbe

in summary & in conclusion …

The waiting place …

I guess it’s just life and we ‘do’ things while we’re waiting to die. Each and every one of us simply fills our time while we’re waiting to die.

Today, I am waiting to be well or just feel a bit better …

a personal concluding note …

And much like a lot of the blogs I start these days I’ve had to cut this one short due to illness I’m feeling overburdened bye the depth I’ve begun to go to. I had determined that I would be aiming to do shorter and simpler blogs but I always get carried away with myself.

… namaste …


Please feel free to contact me to share your outcomes or with any questions you may have.

 fragmented.ME xXx

My birth name is Denise, but I’m know as Bella to those who love me. I have a first class honours degree in education & psychology and a strong passion to keep learning and educating others ... I have severe ME/CFS and lots of other chronic illnesses and I started this blog as an expansion to my instagram page, where I advocate for chronic illness. I am married and have two grown up boys, or should I say young men. I have three gorgeous grandchildren, one boy and two girls. And despite being chronically sick and housebound I am mostly happy. 🥰