Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Why be Grateful?

They say misery loves company. That's not true. Misery does, however, love chocolate.

I've spent a lot of time thinking about what I'm thankful for each day. Some days, I have to think much harder than others. It's silly because our family is very, very blessed. Sure, we live in a tiny house with one bathroom, but at least we HAVE a house! And a job. Two cars.

My kids have to share rooms. They think it's horrible. Leelee longs for privacy. She hates her little sisters getting in to her things.

But my kids have so much that I didn't as a kid.

A house
A car
Two parents who are still married
Siblings (not just half and step)
Food on the table each night
A life without addicts
No abuse
Unconditional Love

Maybe because of the environment I grew up in, it's harder for me to appreciate their struggles. My childhood wasn't ideal. But, it shaped who I am today. It shaped why I became the mother I am. I decided I was going to defy all the statistics.

My mom was an amazing example of defying statistics. She was a teen parent and hearing impaired. Either one of those can be a huge hurdle by itself. Then, she got in a bad second marriage and our lives spiraled out of control.

I still remember the day when reality hit our family between the eyes. My mom saw things for what they were and got us out. We moved far away. We started over. Clean slate. She fell in love again to her knight in shining armor. They've been married 21 years in April. My mom lived the American dream: she went from single welfare mom to a college educated homeowner with a job she loves.

With her as my example, how on earth could I define myself but what happened to me as a kid? It happened TO me, but it is NOT me.

And, I wasn't going to let any of that impact my children. They have lived their lives free from all of that hanging over their heads. We may not have fancy new cars, go on lavish vacations every year, but that's not how I measure success in my life. I measure my success in life by my ability to bring joy to those around me.

And, the first step in sharing joy is having gratitude.

How can you be happy if you can't see what you have?

Count your blessings. That knowledge of blessings will bring you strength when you need to defy the odds.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks and have a great day!