Thursday, September 11, 2008

A spoonful of GRATITUDE

Sometimes it has to be force-fed, shoved down my throat, while plugging my nose - before I GET IT. The past couple of weeks have been, well... tiresome.

I felt yesterday like I was about to visit the ever popular place "wit's end" (as my friend Shawni refers to), do not pass GO, do not collect $200, oh... please stop by Park Place to pay the cost with 2 hotels!!! We played Monopoly last weekend and that's pretty much how it went. Of course it was Disney Monopoly so Mogli (me) had to pay Lady and the Tramp (Saedra) the price of a stay in the Castle at 101 Dalmatian Plantation. Like I wanted to go there anyway, I don't even like dogs for "pizza's sake"! (that was for Ry - he loves to say that)

Anywho... I came to the realization that I needed medication...I know, you're wondering why it took me so long to figure that one out. What I really needed was to medicate my weary mind and soul...and a healthy dose of gratitude did just that!
As I've thought about my "Never gets done, costs too much, ways to get my children to stop arguing, not enough time in the day, pulling my hair out" list lately, I had to stop and breathe and take in that spoonful of beautiful gratitude!

Elder David B. Haight said, "It's so easy in our life for us to receive blessings, many of them almost uncounted, and have things happen in our lives that can help change our lives, improve our lives, and bring the Spirit into our lives. But we sometimes take them for granted. How grateful we should be for the blessings that the gospel of Jesus Christ brings into our hearts and souls. I would remind all of you that if we're ever going to show gratitude properly to our Heavenly Father, we should do it with all our heart, mind, and strength - because it was He who gave us life and breath. As that gratitude is magnified and developed and expanded, it can bless our hearts and our minds and our souls to where we'd like to continue to carry on and do those things that we are asked to do.".

Listening to the piano being played to it's loudest potential, immediately followed by the cello playing the screeeeeeching rendition of "boil the cabbage down" from a very excited 5th grader, while I'm of course trying to talk on the phone - My dose of gratitude: She's actually practicing without me needing to beg and plead...and sometimes yell, not really though :) And she is getting better and loving it. I'm also grateful she didn't choose the violin!

The one decent running vehicle is now in the shop with no a/c. The diagnosis: BAD, needs new compressor. So now I'm back to driving the "Beast" that gets 9, yes that's a 9, miles per gallon. My spoonful of gratitude: The a/c works!

Medical bills straining on my mind, and bank account... My LARGE dose of "G": Read the stories and blogs about the sweet Nielson family and the tragic plane crash the has left both husband and wife in critical care in the burn unit at a Phoenix hospital. Thinking about what the rest of their lives will be like. How thankful I am that we are all healthy and strong.

Complaining that I never get to see my travelin' "Mr.B"... Another gulp of gratitude: I have an amazing husband that supports me in anything I do. Even if it's some hair-brained idea or invention that I want to get a patent for, or going back to school after ___ many years. (Don't even try to guess). He always encourages me to "go for it". He tries to always have family scriptures and prayers even over speaker phone or the web-cam. (which personally I hate, it really does add 10 pounds!) May I also mention he fixed my broken washer without it costing a cent... I'm married to the king of "Jimmy (Or Jerry)- Riggers". That's a blessing right there folks!

Getting a little perturbed when a teenager flips a light on the the early morning hours after yet another sleepless night caused by my aching shoulder... An immeasurable dose of "G": Going in to check on her, only to find her studying her scriptures. Boy oh boy did my heart fill with joy as I counted yet another blessing.
"What did you read about this morning?"
"I read about the Stripling Warriors Mom. I don't know why I had my bookmark there, that's not even where I've been reading."
Maybe to remind you, my sweet girl, that you are a warrior. You go to battle each day against the darkness of the world, but you go as a daughter of God, with the shield of faith being steadfast and immovable, just like them.

When I wallow in self pity that I didn't have the opportunity to have more children... My gallon of "G": That I'm lucky enough to have four arms that wrap around me, 20 fingers to hold, 20 toes to paint, 4 ears to pick at, 2 backs to tickle and 2 sets of lips to smooch my cheeks and randomly say, "I love you momma"! I can never hear enough of that blessing!

Ahhhhh, Life is Grand!


Jolene said...

I've been kind of dwelling on the "have nots" lately. I needed to be reminded of all of my "have"s. Thank you for that.

VarneyFam said...

What a healthy does of "G". Thank you for sharing. It's hard on all of us at some point in time to remember how blessed we truly are - thanks for the reality check! You are an amazing woman with SO many talents. I am so glad to know you!

Pam said...

Are you sure you aren't in the General RS Presidency instead of the Stake with that conference worthy, inspiring address? You are right though there is always something to be grateful for in every situation. We are blessed - thanks for the wonderful reminder Mogli.

Tiffani said...

Thanks Deana, It is so inspiring to really sit and ponder the things we are blessed with. My view of life is adjusting for the better after reading this.

Eric and Breanna Graham said...

I love gratitude reminders. I have been reading the CJanerun blog about the Nielson Family recently. It has really given me a reality check. So I don't have as much money as I want to buy everthing I want, so my kids cried and whined most of the day, so Eric is gone this weekend, so I want a bigger house! I have a good husband with mostly happy healthy kids, I can afford to pay my bills, I live in america where I enjoy freedom beyond measure and I have the glosple. How blessed am I?! Thanks for another reminder.

Lorena said...'re awesome, and that was a great post! Thanks for reminding me of the "G" moments in my life!

James and Hillary Bitter said...

Deana that was beautiful! Wow. That is one big attitude adjustment. Thank you for sharing and changing all. It is true that we all lead such wonderful and blessed lives and we do need to remember and be thankful more often that not. What a great post. It brought tears to my eyes at the end. We miss you lots and hope to see you soon. You are so amazing!

elisha and brett said...

Hey, I made my blog private, so shoot me an e-mail with your e-mail address so I can send you an invite!

sarinahbrooks said...

You are a rock star and even if the web cam adds 10 - you look fabulous darlin! I am impressed on your dedication to turn it around. it is hard to do. Keep smilin girl! You have many on your side. I think women get down on themselves too much and forget all the good. Life is funny - you jyst gotta look for the humor

shawni said...

I'm so with you Deana! I love this. I had an experience years ago that taught me that the happiest times in life are when you're the most thankful for all that you have. And sometimes I need a little reminder. love it.

Miss you guys! We need to get together. If not in Hawaii, how about Gilbert??

Alishia said...

Wow Deanna!! How did you know exactly what I needed right now? No, seriously, you are an answer to my prayers!! I have sick boys again and am realizing what a long, lonely winter it is going to be. I should just be so excited that I have three wonderful boys, sick or not, with the struggles we had to get them here.

It is such a wonderful reminder to see that all of us struggle with day to day life and all we are suppose to be doing. You always seem to have it together and have always been on a pedestal in my book. It's nice to see that in so many ways, you are just like me!!

I agree with Pam, where do we sign you up for General RS Predidet.

Freeman said...

Deana. You truly are amazing. I am so grateful that Ryan made us family. I have loved you for many years, and have been grateful to have you as my (totally cool) aunt, as well as my friend. Thank you for sharing that dose of "g" with us all. I know it lifted my spirit. We miss you and love you and your sweet family. We hope to see you around Christmas! Thank you for the upliftment! You are awesome!

Wendy said...

Thanks for the reminder Deana. I've really got to start that gratitude journal. There are a lot of things that go through our minds every day aren't there? The list is never ending. You are right though, we just need to focus on the positive and eliminate the negative. Hey, I think that is from some Disney movie, it goes along with your game.

barbafamily said...

What a wonderful post! Thanks for sharing...I appreciate the reality check! It's easy sometimes to get caught up in life and forget to remember how blessed we are. I needed that :-)

Brittaney said...

Deana, I am so happy to have snooped on Christine Jensens blog and found yours. I really appreciate all you do for others and I am full of G for you and how you always have a smile for me and everyone you meet.