Wednesday, November 23, 2011



Have you counted your blessings today?
It is a shame that it takes a holiday to remind us to do that, but none the less, I am blessed.  I am learning to do that on more of a daily basis, but I will be honest, it is not always easy.
We learned about gratitude in church this past Sunday and I am so grateful that we did. However, I am thrilled to say that it made me think.
So much can go wrong in our lives and it is so easy to complain, but how does that effect you?
Did you know that the saying, "depression hurts" is true?  It is.  I attended a pain clinic, for chronic pain, for 5 weeks, and I learned that that is 100% true.
My husband and I both suffer from depression and P.T.S.D.  I also have P.M.D.D.  (PMS on steroids is how I describe it).  We also suffer from Fri bro Mialgia, and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.  We suffer from joint and muscle pain and fatigue and had to try a number of medications to deal with it.  The Pain clinic was a last resort.  However, we found that depression DOES hurt.  Your body does the only thing it can, it forces your stress out.  It wants to warn you and make you aware that something is wrong.  I found that the best solution is to find a way to deal with that stress in a more positive way helps.  I had to make a big move, and change my pattern of living.  I had to search for those things that make me really happy, not the things that made me temporarily happy.  We all have different definitions for what that means or what those things are, but you know what I mean.
Writing, drawing, visiting with friends and family, taking a walk, going to the park and doing some photography, or doing a puzzle.  Reading a good book, making a craft, sewing, having some quiet time, or painting a picture... whatever it is that you enjoy it still needs to be something that has real purpose, not just fleeting gratification.  I'm sorry chocolate, but you are not a long term happiness, but you do help in emergency cases.
I was taught to have an attitude of gratitude, but it is sometimes easier said than done.  When you are in the midst of a trial, or you are struggling, either emotionally, physically, spiritually, it is hard to see the point of what you are going through.
If you think negatively, and begin to feel sorry for yourself, how do you start to think?  Does it get harder to find hope or hold on to faith?  Absolutely!
If you try to remember those things that are good about your life, who is good in your life, and what still makes you happy, or at least smile, how much easier is it to endure and more than that... recover?
Being someone who suffers from different types of depression and having grown up with a parent who suffers from depression, I can say that when you begin to feel helpless, hopeless, and struggle just to have the desire to get out of bed, than it is so much harder to find joy again and gratitude than those times when I have a contented attitude.  I find that having gratitude everyday for those people and moments in my life that make me smile, or make me happy, I find that it is so much easier to endure those difficulties in my life, or at least I can be more supportive to those around me who are struggling.
What is my point?  You will be miserable if that is what you surrender too.  You might struggle, but it is okay to allow yourself to have a day of sweats, junk food, and laziness.  However, if you allow that lazy day to stretch into another, and then another, and another, and the pain begins, and the sorrow deepens, then life begins to lose its joy.  We begin to lose site of our blessings, those little moments that life worth living, or sometimes bearable.  We have to make a choice.
There will always be struggles.  There will always be bad days.  There will always be something or someone who makes you crazy, but all of this can be easier if you remember on a daily basis that there are still moments of love, laughter, silliness, and peace to be had.  Even if we have to look for them.
I hope that the holidays will be a wonderful time of rejuvenation and that it is filled with moments of silliness and happiness.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!  I hope it is wonderful for everyone!

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