Sunday, April 21, 2013

#gratefuleverydamnday ...

Okay, so there are these things called "hashtags". Some of you will have surely heard of them. Others, not so much. I will link here if you want a mini tutorial but other then that, not really important. I don't use them often except when I am using say my Instagram app. Again, some of you are shaking your head and clueless, which I really apologize for in advance . But it was an aforementioned hashtag on an Instagram photo, that led me to this post, so hard to get around the confusion. Sorry.

The picture on Instagram was of the oh so beautiful Miss Gwendolyn. Inspiration behind the incredible non-profit, The Gwendolyn Strong Foundation. I love her dearly, as well as her mom and dad and am in awe of  all the amazing things they are doing to facilitate the eradication of the deadly disease Spinal Muscular Atrophy, or SMA, through GSF. Today they posted a picture of Miss Gwendolyn with a whole slew of hashtags and the one that jumped out at me was: #gratefulforeverydamnday.

I paused as I read it and thought, you know what, I really do live that. At least I really and truly try to. And sure, daily there may be things that tend to over shadow that sense of gratitude but at the end of that day, I sit back and despite all of it, despite the struggles and sadness and sorrow, gratitude prevails. And maybe it prevails because of the struggles and sadness and sorrow.

I am tired. And worn. And a bit broken. Those are simple truths to my days lately. I sometimes fear what my tomorrows will bring. Especially where Zoey, in all her fragility, is concerned. But those fears do not dictate my days. I can't let them. And when it comes to her, I find myself gazing at her and marveling in her being. I feel privileged and honored to be caring for her. That she was entrusted to me, has been a gift. One of the greatest, if not THE greatest, of my life. And I am so, so beyond grateful for every damn day with her and for this life of mine. The beautiful things are the things that remain. The good and the gratitude, always, always rise to the top.

Some other things from which gratitude flows.

My other sidekick, Charlotte. She is my little shadow. My buddy. And I adore being her Mimi.

*waiting for Auntie Zoey to come out of school.

Her parents. Who continue to guide us with their remarkable strength. They shouldn't have to and I don't want them to, and its unfair that they are but they do. So we follow.

 And her baby sister, and their precious love. Who is never far from us.

Night runs. They have been far and few between the last 2 months, but when they come, they are a welcomed release from all that weighs me down.

Hot baths. Nightly. Almost with out fail over the last 10 weeks or so. An escape. I read. And think and run the water SO hot that it's almost as if I am purging all the ugliness that the day might have held.

Monthly arrival in the mailbox. The girls gave me a subscription to Birchbox for Christmas. For a year, a little box filled with surprise pampering things arrives at my doorstep. How fun is that?

Date nights with a certain 12 year old boy who doesn't like having his picture taken but still likes hanging with his old mom.

And, an older girl who also doesn't mind inviting her old mom along to a concert. We had so much fun. I felt like I was 20 again, instead of the nearly 50 that I am.

Memories. A few things from my baby book and letters sent to me at camp. Remembering my mom. Missing her more and more as we inch ever closer to the one year anniversary of her death. Surreal. Even more so as the months have gone by. Not sure how that is. Watching my dad endure these days, literally hurts my heart. My pain and missing, nothing compared to his.

And finally, one of my favorite places from our Yosemite trip. Happy Isles. I was happy there. And relaxed. There was an indescribable peacefulness about that place. The constant running water maybe. Hard to say. But one thing I know, we cannot wait to go back.

And you, if you care to. Share something you might be grateful for. Always wonder who's out there still. Last month hit 5 years since I started this blog. Crazy amount of time to devote to this but grateful. Grateful for this little space. It has been a lifeline over the years. Comment if you wish. If not, thats okay too. I'll still write. For now. Till I decide that it's been a good run.

Not done yet. Not quite.


Holly said...

Thank you for sharing and giving me a reminder to be thankful for every day. The good ones and the bad ones all come together to make me who I am. They help me to grow, to change, to become the me that is in me.

Rochelle said...

Grateful for your blog and it leading me to sweet friends like you. Grateful for the m3 littles that God has blessed me with and the 2 more that await me in heaven. Blessed for modern medicine that is kicking this cancer.
Love you, keep blogging.

Elizabeth said...

I'm grateful to have friends such as yourself who pick up my slack on the practice of gratitude.

Anonymous said...

I am grateful for my kids, for good books and a little bit of time to read them, and for being reminded to be grateful :)

Lisa said...

Hi Heather..I've been quietly following your blog from Denver. I am also a Mimi who is blessed beyond measure to watch my only grandchild, Julia, who will be 6 in June and is another one of God's special gifts. Thank you for sharing your heart, I feel such a connection. Keep writing!

Anonymous said...

I'm grateful that I am still considered a mama even though my two babies are now in heaven. I know I will get to see them again one day and I cherish the memories I do have of them. God bless you and your lovely family.

Kristin said...

Grateful today for a quick but fun Mommy/daughter weekend getaway to my nephew's wedding. Even more grateful that I noticed the inside edge of my tires were bald before we left, and had time to get a new set installed before we left!

Anonymous said...

Heather - so grateful that you started this blog and led me to the many families whose stories have touched me. I feel blessed to see a small glimpse in to the lives of such courageous men and women. Thank you my friend. Christy Pinuelas

Reagan Leigh said...

Thankful for another sleepy but good day for my girl. Today I got another painful reminder of how fragile our kiddos are with Talon's passing. So sad...and so scary! Missing you friend!

blogzilly said...

And as you can see, by leaving a comment in the wrong post, my point is made. ;)

Alessandra said...

Hi Heather,

Thank you so very much for sharing your family with us. I know we live in the same town and I grew up with your older three, but we rarely cross paths. Your family has always been in my prayers and it is such a joy to see how well Zoey is doing. She truly is a miracle and I mention her name when talking about miracles to friends. She's a constant reminder that no matter how tough life can be, you have to smile through it. She's a wonder.


Justine said...

I am grateful that you are going to keep blogging. And I am grateful for my four treasures. And coffee.

Merideth said...

I am still here. ♥ I am grateful that my heart still beats after all it has endured. Not physically, but emotionally.


Maria Hellenbrand said...

Thank you for sharing and God bless!

Kenneth Lilly said...

Irony is that I didn't see this post until this morning. But I had a conversation with a group of guys I had not seen since pre-Bennett everything last night. Had been 7 years. These guys who had been a part of my life pretty closely late 90's, early 2000's, what you call good people. Followed the story, though as happens with many, I retracted from my so-called normal friends because, I dunno, felt like I was just burdening them with my junk.

But last night, I was asked about Bennett and didn't feel that way. I talked about him in a positive way. I talked about his gifts and how far his brother and he had come. I focused on the fact that while we struggle, there is usually something good to cling to.

I know it will never be a smoothly paved road for you Heather, but I think you keep turning huge corners on it.