Counting My Blessings – How Gratitude Has Helped Me Make Peace With The Things I Cannot Change

Counting every blessing. The joy that comes from gratitude.

Counting every blessing that I have received this year. I am grateful for the good, the bad, the in-betweens and all the lessons that came with them all. What a year 2018 has been! I still think it was better than 2017 which happened to be a really crappy year for my family and I. So when I think about it, gratitude is the first thing on my mind.

Over the last few weeks, I have watched a gazillion Christmas movies (thanks to Amazon Prime). Can I just tell you how much I love Amazon Prime, from the movies, the music, and free shipping! I have had it for a year now and I just renewed my subscription because it is the best thing ever! It really is one of my favorite things and you can try it for 30 days for absolutely free. Okay, I digress.

Last week we went on a road trip from San Francisco to Las Vegas through Yosemite National Park and then to The Grand Canyon and came back to San Francisco over a span of 4 days. That was epic and I am going to share all about it on the blog on Friday. You can find that post here, I am sure you will love it.

One of the best things that happened this year was that I made peace with my son’s medical condition.

Early 2017 our son was diagnosed with macrodactyly (an uncommon condition in which a baby’s toes or fingers are abnormally large due to the overgrowth of the underlying bone and soft tissue) on both of his hands. The diagnosis was a really bitter pill to swallow because of how complex it is to “treat” the condition. My hubby and I struggled with it so much and at some point, we were both very depressed.

And then at some point this year after visiting several different doctors and hearing the same thing every time we made a decision. We decided to just stop, count our blessings and be grateful for what we have.

counting every blessing- read about the power of gratitude

Here is something about counting your blessings, you suddenly realize that you have so much that you have been ignoring in pursuit of that which you don’t have. We have a healthy child for the most part. He has the cutest smile I have ever set my eyes on and he is so brilliant and funny and so much more. See, his hands may not look like anybody else’s but his heart is precious. He brings joy to everybody around him and that is a blessing we cannot afford to ignore.

Counting Every Blessing

As soon as we stopped focusing on what we were missing and started focusing on what we had, it did not matter anymore. There used to be days that a minute did not pass without thinking about what is “wrong” with my son’s hands. Now I can go for months without thinking about it.

joy comes from within everything else is a bonus- gratitude post

In fact, I no longer notice that my son is different until someone points it out. I am just grateful. Grateful that I have a son, that he is alive and well, that he has everything he needs to function and that he is happy. Those are all blessings and counting every blessing is what I am determined to do.

And that is the spirit I am learning to apply to all areas of my life. To stop worrying about the things that are not perfect in my life and be thankful for whatever it is that I have. Counting every blessing in my life because they are more than enough.

The other lesson I am learning is to find Joy from within.

I was having a conversation with hubby this morning and he said,

 “ you know, I find that the things that make me the happiest are the things I push myself to do. It is not the compliments that people give me or what others are doing for me that make me happy. For me, my joy comes from within. Whatever happens on the outside to make me happy, it is just a bonus.”

That, my friends, is profound! Whatever joy you get from the external, that should be a bonus.

Joy comes from within. Counting your blessings will help you find joy despite the difficulties you may be facing.

Unfortunately, joy from within doesn’t come easy for me. I am constantly distracted by all the things that are not going right. I tend to overthink things and blow them out of proportion. It is very easy to worry yourself sick once things seem hopeless. My intention in the next year is to be deliberate about being joyful. To intentionally remind myself to choose joy over worry. To remember that the circumstances around me can make me sad if I allow them but they can never ever bring me joy. Because Joy is an Inside job.

I challenge you as you enter the new year to choose joy in your life.

If something is going wrong it’s okay to feel sad, but don’t dwell on a situation that should have lasted 5 minutes and milk it for the whole day. Get over it, decide to find your joy within not without. And remember that counting every blessing you get is important. There are never too few to count.

Cheers to a happy new year 2019 and Cheers to finding joy within!

With love and light,

Debbie – Streaks of Light.

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