Saturday, September 22, 2012

Appreciating the Little Things

It's Saturday, September 22, 2012. 8:32 am. Nothing particularly noteworthy about this day. Meaning, it's not a birthday or anniversary or any other meaningful date. And yet, I want to make sure and LOVE THIS DAY!!!!

Why? Well, it's so important to be focused on the positive in life. To not take the little things for granted. Like the birds I hear chirping outside my window. They're talking to each other. I wish I knew what they were saying. :) I know, a lot of people are too focused on the bigger things in life to EVER notice a birdsong happening right outside their window. So, does this mean I should be grateful?

I think it does. Gratitude comes when you least expect it. At least for me. I've been writing a lot about my challenges with Crohn's disease lately. And, even though I don't feel as physically good as I wish I did, and I don't have answers and solutions in this very moment, I'm grateful! 

  • I'm grateful for the fact that I woke up this morning in my own bed, not a hospital bed.
  • I'm grateful for the incredible love and support and empathy and understanding Hawea wraps me in. She makes jokes to lighten the mood. She deals with the unpleasant aspects of this condition usually without complaint. She's protective of me. She loves me not only through her heart, but through her actions. I can't find the words to describe how deeply loved I am. 
  • I'm grateful to be able to buy what I need at the grocery store. So it's a liquid diet for a couple of weeks at least. But guess what? There are a ton of tasty juices and soups available, and at least I can have those!!! I was reading a book last night called "The Man Who Couldn't Eat". He had severe complications from Crohn's and couldn't consume anything orally for 3 months. I can identify with so much of his experience on a very small scale. And I am SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO SO GRATEFUL that my challenges have been managed this well. I am grateful for my soup, for smoothies. For being able to drink a glass of juice. To sip a cup of water. It's the little things in life we take for granted. 
  • Tasty (ugly)  nutritious breakfast
  • Thank you, body, for being my friend this morning! For deciding to go to the bathroom first thing, and for my tummy feeling flat and normal. This is one of the best feelings ever. I love the "absence of gas" feeling and it seems that I feel it more and more often. 
  • It's great to have cool iphone apps to track symptoms. Technology is awesome, isn't it? 
  • And, lest I give the impression that I only think about myself, I'm thankful for the amazing, strong, compassionate people in my life, in my world. Thankful for their care and consideration. For their love. I know that there are opportunities, every day, to come out of myself and see what I can do to love them back. To support them. To acknowledge their challenges and celebrate their victories. We all have our burdens. Crohn's may be less relatable than the single mom raising a child with behavior issues, or the morbidly obsese person's struggle to lose over 100 pounds,  but that doesn't make my struggle more or less important than yours. I think I needed that perspective check this morning. 
  • Thankful I have ways to manage fear and panic, and that I'm remembering to do so. Writing is one of those ways. The fear comes from feeling out of control, and lack of faith and trust in my body to do what it needs to do. Again, feeling out of control is a common feeling, people in various situations experience it. It's not exclusive to people with IBD. Lack of faith and trust are things I CAN control, if I choose to. I'm working on it. 
  • Thankful for so many many blessings, including my work - a light schedule that I can keep up with even when I'm not feeling well. For the fact that I love the people I work with. They are kind and good. For being able to do good work. 
  • And... the upcoming mainland trip! This is a good one. A chance to visit my Iowa and Illinois family whom I haven't seen in four years. A chance to celebrate Nikki and TJ and their family. To reconnect with old friends. And to spread the love. :) 
A grateful person trusts enough to give life another chance, to stay open for
surprises. ~ Brother David Steindal-Rast

1 comment: