Friday, April 18, 2014

Counting Our Blessings and Joys

It's been a busy week.  It's been a crazy week.  It began with waking to snow on Monday morning, after a weekend of beautiful, but windy, Spring weather.  Temps in the low 80s were a blessed relief from the colder temps.  I was finally thawing!

Because my youngest granddaughter would soon be arriving for me to take her to Pre-K, but I couldn't find the ice scraper (the snow had obviously started as freezing rain), I used my fingers and fingernails to clear the snow and ice from my windshield.  Not a smart move.  Ten minutes later, my fingertips were so cold that I couldn't feel anything except the burning.  A bit of frostbite?  Maybe, and it took until the next day before they felt close to normal.  Lesson learned?  Yes.

Tuesday was Tax Day, and my focus all day was on that.  My taxes were filed and the first of quarterlies were sent.  But before I knew it, the day was over, and I went to sleep exhausted.  Mental work is exhausting!  Add my tendency to be math-challenged, and...  You get the picture.

Wednesday was spent catching up on what didn't get done on Tuesday.  It also brought a bright spot I nearly missed, if it hadn't been for an email.  My critique group met, and three of us shared our writing, and our thoughts (and complaints and woes) on writing.  To help one of our group, who hasn't been writing as much as she should, we decided that meeting every two weeks wasn't enough, and we'd be meeting weekly, at least for a while.  To be honest, it's as much for us as it is for her.  We all often need a push to do the things we've been putting off.  I'm certainly guilty of that.  The bonus of this is seeing friends more often.  Aha!  A blessing!

Then along came Thursday, and another day was gone before I knew it, and now Friday is here.  I ask myself what I've accomplished this week.  On the surface, it doesn't seem like much--except for those taxes finally getting done.  But looking back, I've been reading more than usual.  More non-fiction than fiction.  I've been learning...about myself, who I am, and how to make life better.  By better, I mean more positive than negative.

It seems that too many days go by without memory of what happened.  Nose to the grindstone sometimes means not seeing or experiencing the small joys in life.  And once that happens, we lose ourselves, seeing only the negative things or simply being relieved that we made it through another day without disaster striking in one form or another.

We all struggle with something.  I've been allowing myself the pleasure of reading, done while waiting for grandkids to be released from school and less than an hour before my go-to-sleep ritual.  I'm learning how to deal with things I struggle with.  I'm learning that I'm important.  I'm learning to focus on the good things and expect those struggles to right themselves, if only by turning some of them to blessings.

There are many joys in life.  Sometimes we forget to notice them.  The opportunity to read is one of mine.  Like the little girl in the image above, I've been a reader all my life.  As an adult, it's been my go-to reward, many times. It's also a gentle reminder that time spent reading is a blessing for my soul.  It lifts me up, takes me to places I've never known, and expands my understanding.

If you haven't given yourself the gift of reading lately, pick up a book and start reading.  Even if it's only for a few minutes, it's a blessing.  Blessings are our Joy.

What blessings have appeared in your life lately?  What has brought you joy?
Learn to get in touch with the silence within yourself, and know that everything in life has purpose. There are no mistakes, no coincidences, all events are blessings given to us to learn from. ~ Elisabeth Kubler-Ross

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