I’m not a very science minded person, but it was pretty fascinating to read about the Rosetta probe which landed on a comet this past week. Yes, it’s great for science and space exploration but what really fascinated me was the journey that came before the moment.
Launched in 2004, Rosetta spent almost 10 years in space. Travelled millions of miles. Then, it finally landed.
That’s an impressive commitment. That’s a significant journey. I went back to articles written in 2004 when it was just launched. The scientists knew what was ahead and that they would be waiting a long time. I try to imagine starting something and knowing I’d have to wait at least 10 years until anything happened. I would go crazy! I am a results driven type personality. I open the oven at least 3 times before the cookies are done because I just want them to be READY. I burn my hands taking hot dishes out of the dishwasher because I don’t want to WAIT for them to cool down. I’ve sometimes worn wet pants because the dryer is just too SLOW. (I’d be a horrible scientist. I lack patience and math skills.)
But sometimes, waiting is important. Yet, I’m sure the launch team just didn’t sit around for the past 10 years and watch TV. I would think that they took the time to learn all they could about comets, about space, the experiments, the findings. I have no doubt that they were ready when Rosetta landed on the comet. Making the most of that season.
You don’t ignore the waiting.
It can be the most important part of the journey.
That probe had to be in the right position, at the right time, the right place, the right angle to land with precision on the comet. If it hadn’t travelled it’s journey, it wouldn’t have reached the intended destination.
That’s a good lesson. So often, we just want to get there. We want things to happen. When we do that, we miss the learning. It’s not always fun, it can test your patience, it can be hard, it can feel painful. It can seem like a literal millions miles. But when you get there, you are ready.
The journey helps us become who we are.
And even when we “arrive”, it’s all preparation for the next part of the adventure.
Maybe it won’t take 10 years.
Maybe it will.
I’ve decided not to rush.
Me, who doesn’t get much science talk, now inspired by a smart piece of metal named Rosetta.
No more wishing time away, anxious about what is to come.
Enjoy the journey.