Two Sundays ago I challenged myself to a week of finding gratitude in every day. Not like those #Blessed posts we see everywhere, but gratitude in simple, every day things that maybe it’s hard to find gratitude in. I’m sure you’ve heard and read as I have about how being grateful for simple, everyday things can give you a lift in your overall attitude and how you approach things.
Now I’d first like to explain how I came up with the idea to test this out:
My kids were driving me fucking crazy.
To the point that at the advice of my therapist I locked everyone out of my bedroom so I could go lay in my closet and stave off the panic attack I was feeling coming on. One child, Muffin Man, is a 3 year old who may be possessed some days. The other is Mr Blue Eyes, an 11 month old who is sloooooowly getting molars, and unbeknownst to me at the time, was in the very beginning stages of an ear infection. I stopped folding laundry and while laying in my closet to calm down I was trying to breathe and focus on the here and now. I started meditating about 7 months ago. Not daily at first, but here and there. I realized it made me feel better. I now try to meditate daily as I’ve noticed a huge difference in myself and the way I feel when I do (this will also be a future topic). One of my favorite guided meditations on my app is about gratitude. So from my closet floor I tried thinking of what I was grateful for in that moment. Wine. In that moment it was wine. Started small people, but it was a start. So I decided to try out this gratitude thing for the next week.
Today was easy. My husband took my kids to school in the morning and I decided to do something I’ve daydreamt of for a long time. I went to Barnes and Noble. Alone. No kids. No husband. I browsed books section by section. I googled books I’d be interested in and searched the shelves for them. I sat on the floor of aisles browsing these books. I looked at the vast magazine section and discovered some new ones that looked amazing. I ordered lunch from the Starbucks cafe along with a London Fog, and read a new magazine. I enjoyed my lunch next to the large windows with the sunshine pouring in. It was heavenly. I felt guilty for playing hooky from life for a few hours, but it was nourishing for me for sure. I was grateful that through my husband following his dream I get to slowly realize small dreams of my own. (That evening I was thankful for wine again)
Today involves a trip to the doctor. Mr Blue Eyes has kept me up all last night. I could tell something was off, so to the doctors we went. He had an ear infection. His 5th in 5 months. Mamas who have gone down the path of ear tubes you know where this is headed, a referral to an ENT. Super. We barely dodged this with Muffin Man. In comes the gratitude even in this. We have an amazing doctors office with a caring staff and thank God for modern medicine. Do I want my child to have any type of procedure done? Of course not. If it means he will not have to be in pain like this every 4-6 weeks though, I’m grateful for that. Tylenol ranks pretty high on my gratitude list today as well.
Daddy takes Muffin Man to school and I prepare for a day home with Mr Blue Eyes. He miraculously wakes up happy. We have a fun day together. We read, roll around on the ground, play airplane, play with his other toys, danced, and he even ‘helped’ me meal plan and make a grocery list. This mostly involved ripping apart cookbooks and magazines while crawling on me, but help from an 11 month old is simply not having them fight the task you’re trying to accomplish. It’s a treat to get some one on one time with him. He’s our last baby, so I’m relishing in his chunky thighs and sweet baby giggles. I’m grateful today again for my husband. He’s literally my boss, so I don’t have to fear being fired when I’m needed to stay home with one of the kids.
I’m getting a root canal today and a cavity filled. During my gratitude week. Believe it or not this was an easy day to be grateful as well. When I found out I needed dental work done my first thought wasn’t, ‘How are we going to pay for this??’. I knew we could. How huge of a blessing is that? When something involving needles, or really anything with any unknown, comes up I normally freak out internally leading up to it. Maybe it’s the Lexapro, but I didn’t do this this time. I’m grateful for this because I didn’t waste time out of my life feeling miserable and worrying about this. I’m also glad they have tv’s for your chair as you’re getting work done. Guilt free tv watching. Only cost me dental work.
I get a massage today. An hour of quiet time while someone rubs the knots out of my ‘still lugging around my 22 lb baby’ shoulders. The hubby gifted me a Massage Envy membership. After I started my Lexapro I broke out horribly. Getting a facial then was such a help. Don’t know if I’m more grateful for the massage or hubby today.
Friends. Friends without kids. Mom friends. New friends. Friends we’ve known forever. How do people possibly think they can do life without friends? I couldn’t. I’m beyond grateful for my real friends. The ones that are happy for you successes and help hold you up during the rough stuff. Tonight I’ve planned a girl’s night out for some friends. One of my mom friends was having her birthday and her request was to go to the Chocolate Bar (martinis to die for) and watch Bad Moms back at my place. It was an amazing night out with women who are full of heart and fire. Not only am I grateful for tonight, but I’m grateful to have a husband that understands I need time to do things for myself. This helps me to be a better everything. Mom, wife, friend.
We’ve come full circle. Once again laundry is (sort of) being done. We are enjoying a lazy Sunday in. Together as a family, just the four of us. The perfect way to end my week on gratitude is to end it with what I’m most grateful for. These 3 boys that make my life and heart complete. They’re also the reason some nights that mommy is grateful for wine.
To some up my gratitude week I’d say the stories are correct. If you can find gratitude in the rough times, or even pause in the really good times to look around and see everything you have, you will feel more uplifted. I felt more hopeful. More at peace. And of course more #Blessed. Try it out for yourself and I’d love to hear how it goes for you.
I’m also grateful to all of you that take the time to read my musings.