I swear that I am supposed to be learning something, but I certainly haven’t figured out what yet. Since I have last written a virtual torrent of crap has been raining down in my life. Multiple (totaling over 10 at last count) lengthy life-threatening hospitalizations for my mom, dad and MIL, all with unnecessary, ugly attendant family drama. Nephew got hit by a truck (he is okay), husband hit deer with car ($6000 worth of repairs it is okay now too), and the dog even had 2 surgeries for cancer. Even as I write this, my dad just got out of the hospital and my mom is sick. Almost as soon as one crisis is quelled, another slides in to take its place. I even expect it now.
And as I run my fingers through my hair in exasperation, I recognize my gratitude practice has helped me to keep some sense of feeling grounded even as my knees get knocked out from under me again. And I don’t mean the it-could-be-worse kind of gratitude, which actually invokes more fear as I start looking over my shoulder for more another looming disaster. More like the kind where I acknowledge all of the support I have, even if just to remind myself that the support is there. Things like how I am grateful for having been taught how to resourceful (thanks Mom and Dad), for having a background in science/biomedical research which helps me navigate the medical world, for a supportive husband who even is cool with my mom living with us, for an amazing therapist, for meditation, yoga and exercise, for great friends who really listen, for writing to help me sort it all out, and for the touching kindnesses of strangers. The gratitude doesn’t make my pain go away, but it does make it more bearable.