Day 12 – Being thankful (it really does matter)

One day when I was driving home with my son in the back of my car, he started to cry. I tried music. I tried talking to him. I tried getting out and giving him juice and snacks. I checked to make sure he didn’t need anything else. I tried everything I knew to convince him that it was going to be okay. I gave him everything he could need. As he continued crying we began again with just a few more blocks to our house. I remember sitting at the stop sign and saying to him, “If you could only see, my love, we’re just a few minutes from being there. Just a few more minutes. It’s almost over. You don’t have to worry. Everything will be just as you want it to be soon. ”

In that moment I began to realize just how similar that sweet little baby and I were. I thought to myself:

How many times do I sit there wondering, crying, ‘God why isn’t this happening yet? Why can’t I see what’s going on? Why isn’t it the way I want it to be? What can I do to make things different? I can’t use what I have, I don’t even want this stuff I’ve got. I want something different, something better. Why can’t you just give me what I really want? Why is it like this? Why can’t I see the way out?’ and all the while God is sitting there saying, ‘It’s okay. I’ve given you everything you can possibly need. It’s all right there. Everything is waiting for you to arrive. You’re so close. You don’t have to cry. You don’t have to worry. I promise it’s all right there. If you could only just believe me, it would all be okay. ’” 

 

I spent so much time worrying about why things weren’t right, that I failed to understand everything that was right with where I was. I didn’t appreciate it. I wasn’t thankful for it. I just threw it aside thinking I didn’t really need it. What’s the use in all of this stuff? I let myself get to a point where I couldn’t see past the hurt, the worry, the fear. It consumed me. And so it consumed everything I did for the most part, as well.

When we got home that day, I turned on Oprah, and there was a woman who had survived the attack on the World Trade Center on 9/11. As I watched, she talked about all of the things she goes through each day just to get up and going. She had been burned over a large portion of her body. She could no longer hold her children. Up until recently, she couldn’t even open the peanut butter jar to make a sandwich for her children’s lunch. While watching, I realized all of the things that I had to be thankful for.

I can hold my son. I can touch his face. I can hug him. I can pick him up. I can see him smile. I can hear his laughter. I can play with him. I can drive him anywhere he needs to go. I can feel him breathe. I can run and jump with him. I can teach him to play sports. I have so many things to be thankful for, especially when it comes to him. He and my nephews make me smile every day. They fill my heart with joy every day. They let me love them every day, and I feel so honored to be able to do so. And I am so thankful to have the chance, all day every day to try again.

Even when I get things wrong, I have learned to be thankful that I have the chance to try again. And one of the ways I try to show my gratitude is by trying to make the right choice after I’ve made the wrong one. If it is something that can be undone, then I try to undo it. If the chance has passed, then I make sure to try not to make the same mistake again. With gratitude comes the possibility for change. If we recognize that it is possible for us at any moment to show that we are thankful, somehow, some way, we can seize the opportunity instead of allowing it to pass us by.

About laurenc129

I'm a mom. Sometimes my hands turn orange. Other times I write. On twitter: @laurenc129

Posted on May 12, 2012, in 31 days of May, babies and bugs, writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

  1. I especially appreciate the part about talking to God. Many of us can relate to that. Congratulations on finding your way through the morass.

  2. I like your story of being in the car…during life’s challenges it helps to know we will have what we need…thanks for your visit and “like’.

  3. That is so true and so wonderful when we come to that conclusion. At many points in my life I would acknowledge this even through the darkest times.But then there came a day when I put it into practice every day, when I would catch myself complaining..it’s like a light would go on and I’d pull my thoughts back into being grateful for the many blessings around me. It’s a wonderful realization, because the tough times and moments still keep coming…but with the mindset you described we can get through them…..Great Post!….Diane

    • It has truly been nice having something to fall back on when times get tough, and even when I am frustrated, I know that it won’t last. I know that there is a place to go back to even if I haven’t chosen to return yet. Happy mother’s day! 🙂

  4. You’ve got me thinking…. again LOL I have to learn to trust that the universe will – and does – provide for me… I simply know that things are going to be okay… and yet, right now, they’re not… and I know that I can’t and should’t expect things to just magically fall into place… I know I must work towards this… but there’s a part of me that’s continually asking… “what if?”… what if it doesn’t go to plan… what if the money doesn’t appear?

    I’m going through an anxious phase right now LOL But like I just wrote to my friend…. I’ll be okay tomorrow…

    …and in another year, I know it will all be worth it… I can’t tell you how I know… I just know… I’ve known things before and I’ve been right…

    …and now I’m rambling LOL Time for bed, methinks…. 🙂

    • I’m in a very “what if” state myself. It’s quite frustrating especially because things aren’t within my control. And a lot of what is going to happen in the near future is dependent upon other people. And I find it a bit scary. But I’m trying to remember to go back to the places I know I need to go. And where I know that I can trust and things will work out. And hopefully they will workout really well, really soon! Ha! Trust what you know!

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