I have started to write this post a couple of weeks ago, while I was grounded with the flu and feeling like shit. All after having been grounded for two weeks already, because the two kids were sick. Twice, both, and from two different viruses. One after the other. God, I love being a mom! During that time, I have been going from moments where I could barely breath and think, to moments where I’d wish everyone would magically disappear and just leave me alone (on a warm sandy beach, possibly). Clearly, I was not able to see the power of being grateful at that time.
The moment I started to feel like myself again though, a big revelation hit me. When I was at my lowest, I was literally feeling like I was going to die. Still, I was not able to appreciate the fact that I was not dead yet. Maybe it’s because, deep down, I perfectly knew that at some point I would get better, eventually. Which could explain why we appreciate the things we have only seconds after we’ve lost them. And why we can only start to acknowledge the power of being grateful after something bad has happened.
I have already said many times how lucky and blessed I am for having two beautiful and healthy children. Well, healthy clearly not. But nothing too serious so far, I mean. However, I have also always been very honest and opened about how difficult it is to be a parent (and especially a mom). It’s a hell of a roller-coaster journey! Especially those times when you are sick and not only there is no one to take care of you, but you must take care of two little sneezing and puking humans.
Is it the fever talking?
Well, maybe it was at some point. But I cannot blame it on the fever anymore. I think we must reconcile with the fact that we cannot feel gratitude every time. Our pain and our sadness must be processed before we can live again. Particularly, when we feel like life has let us down. And I have to thank my therapist for teaching this to me. Hes site is in French only at the moment but she speaks very good English and she is great.
It is very hard to acknowledge the power of being grateful when the only thing you wish for is you did not have a nose or a throat, for instance. But now I’ve come to realize that the moment you can take back control of your “normal” you, and you start to appreciate life again (which, in my case, was when I could have a sense of smell again), being thankful for what you have can help you feel even better and accomplish even more.
We are so damn lucky to be able to grow old and watch our kids grow and help them become fulfilled adults. Or even just adults, I am good with that. Only, we do not think about it in this way. At least not until someone dies or loses it all.
The real privilege is growing old
Why is it that all we see when we get dressed in the morning are the kilos we cannot put down? Why all we think about when we look at ourselves in the mirror are the wrinkles and the white hair? What if we decide to change that and only focus on what we are, what we can be, and the immense gratitude for still being able to be something? Growing old is a privilege, a luxury that unfortunately is not given to everyone. We are so stuck in society’s perception of life, that we forget what really matters.
Life is so fragile, yet we tend to forget it. Probably because we would be too scared to live and be otherwise. However, I find extreme strength in reconciling with the fact that it could all go in a second. And taking a moment to think about this can only makes us stronger. These things happen more often that we think unfortunately. Being grateful for what we are, day by day, helps to stay grounded and make the most out of the present.
I promise myself…
I am promising myself to be more grateful every day. To take a moment every night and every morning, to acknowledge all the great things that the day has brought. Starting from waking up, spending time with my loved ones, getting to see my kids smile, taking them to school, cooking for them, and yes why not, even yelling at them.
By expressing gratitude for what we have, what we are and what we can be, we inevitably focus on the positives, which also include things we have accomplished and not only things we’ve been given by others. And when you recognize the good you have been capable of doing to yourself, your self-esteem inevitably grows too!
So tonight, before going to sleep, I will try and think about all the little things I am grateful for. I have already written about the need to stop complaining about what we do not have and start focusing on what we do have. This time it’s more about thanking God, the universe, or anyone you believe in, for what you have been able to live today and embracing the power of being grateful. You will see that this positive energy will come back at you at some point.