Sunday, April 15, 2012

The Gift of Small

Funny how life goes, isn't it?  I post about getting stronger this past Thursday morning and I start a flare-up that afternoon.  The pain has been fierce so, of course, my sleep is getting poorer and poorer which, of course, makes the pain even more fierce.  I know this horrible cycle will stop at some point, but it may take a week to several weeks or so.  As for now, I'm thankful for the new medication I'm on.  I'm living from one pill to the next and trying to do a bit of bear work, as well, to keep my spirits up.

I'm trying not to feel sorry for myself--I have so many uncountable blessings.  It's hard sometimes, though.  I've been reminded lately how "big" some people's lives are.  One gift I've learned through the many years of this is to savor the little daily gifts we all receive and to not take them for advantage.  To love the "small."

from the Graphics Fairy

My grandmother always told me, "Good things come in small packages."  I know she was referring to me as I was a small child compared to others.  Perhaps this is why I have always loved the "little."  A beautiful flower in the center of the table.  Lovely colors in a prism.  A silly metal pig with wings.  An old doll, cracked with age and love.  And, of course, one of the most beautiful gifts, the smile of a loved one.  Watching the joy in their face.

My grandmother's life became much more contracted than mine currently is, and with luck, more than mine will ever be.  She spent her last years confined to a bed, unable to walk.  I was a young adult at that time, still foolish enough to think that one can plan one's life.  Her face still radiated joy, especially from the little things.  Sometimes I'm afraid that I am walking down her same path and it brings tears to my eyes.  Yes, we seem to share the same disease, but I have to remind myself that, unlike she, I have a diagnosis and researchers are discovering more and better ways to treat it.

So, I'm thankful.  Granted, right now as the pain breaks through all of the medications I'm taking it is harder to see all of the little gifts before me.  But I do.  It's become a habit.  A lovely habit to notice all that is around me and to be grateful.  I find that I say little prayers of gratitude throughout the entire day.  Of course, it is easier on the "good" days.  However, even on tough days like these, I say them without a second thought.  I may not be able to get out of the house to feel the sunshine, the wind may be too sharp for my bones, but I notice how it glimmers on the polished wood floor.  I'm thankful for the comfortable couch and for the swirls of color in the rug.  I'm thankful for the gifts of heated blankets and red lap quilts.  I'm thankful for the gift of walking and I rarely, if ever, forget to be thankful each time I can exercise my body.

And I never forget to be thankful for the loved ones that surround me and support me on my dark days and all the bright ones, as well.  Indeed, I treasure them more than they may ever know.  I know my days are numbered with them, so I'm thankful for each additional day I'm given the gift of their presence.  I'm not being morbid.  It's just the way of it.  I think perhaps it's easier to be grateful for each petal on a flower when one knows that it won't last.  I don't feel bad for myself because my life is restricted and not "big."  No, it is completely a blessing when one looks at it the right way.

15 comments:

  1. Aww, sorry you hit another rough patch (((((HUGS)))))

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  2. Yes Cheryl, consider each petal, each chirping of birds, small animals every joke in our gardens, each smiles of our children and our friends as the great gifts of life. This helps us to continue a road often fraught with difficulties and pain. Cherryl tenderly kisses

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  3. Thank you both for your sweet words! I know this "patch" of rough road will pass soon enough. Don't worry I'll keep my chin up!

    Heaps of Hugs,
    Cheryl

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  4. Hi Cheryl,

    I missed to read what you are fighting but I fully agree about being thankful for every little gift you get in your life. Sometimes all you have to do is look for these small things and suddenly you discover, there is more in your life to be thankful for than you would have expected.
    Whatever it is you are fighting, I whish you a speedy recovery!

    Hugs,
    Marion

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  5. Your words are bright. You certainly have the best attitude you can have now.
    When things do get bad for me I always try to remember that even though the pain is horrible, it is not a degenerative disease. It will always go away again.
    There are many people who give up, who let this confine them to a bed. I can see that you are not one of those people, you are a fighter. Keep your good thoughts. I will send some your way too.

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  6. Dear Cheryl, My eyes filled with tears when I read your post. I do hope you feel better soon and are able to get outside into some lovely, warm sunshine, hear the birds and smell the flowers.
    Please be kind to yourself and don't work too hard. x

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  7. We are just falling apart, woman! What is going on??? Do you have my email? Do I have your email... Yup, I'm sending you an email!

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  8. A beautiful post. You're an inspiration. These posts really help to remind me to be grateful for small things. Take care x

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  9. Hi Cheryl,

    So sorry to hear about your recent challenges and pain problems. But your post is very uplifting and I think your attitude must certainly be helpful - I hope so. It was very touching and I wish for you all the best and a quick return to being able to do the things you love without pain.

    Take good care!
    ~ginger

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  10. I can't tell you what all of your comments have meant to me. I think I'm struggling more that I want to admit to keep from drowning in sadness--it seems to always be just below the surface. Your words have helped to support me and to keep up my morale more than you probably know. Thank you again and again.

    Heaps of Hugs,
    Cheryl

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  11. Hi Cheryl,
    little things are somehow always the biggest things and the ones that matter most. Remember to breathe through the pain(literally),breathing exercises help, and remember there are lots of us smiling at you lifting you up, Prayers surround you. You have the right to feel down,experience it and then let it go.we fall down but we get up. Much love,
    Darlene

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  12. Hi Cheryl:
    I enjoy your sweet bears! I hope you are feeling better. Sending prayers for your health and hope to see more bears you have created soon!
    Carol

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  13. Cheryl: God never gives us more than we can handle and you must know that though your journey is difficult there is a part of the pain that has allowed you to see what so many forget to see... your journey is yours and yours alone and your strength to deal with it is a blessing. I know words like this might seem less comforting than some but I do feel that your bears are what they are because of every twinge of pain and ache... that has allowed you to push through to the other side and reflect a sweetness that would not be possible otherwise! Your grandmother surely has her wings wrapped tightly around you having been there herself. You are seeing all the "purple flowers" that most people rush by daily on their way to work because their lives are soooooo busy! Your pain has slowed you down so you can take notice of - the little things! What a blessing! Big Hugs my friend. I wish for days that are calm and pain free for you to reflect all that you have seen on the bad days through your beautiful bears!

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  14. PS. my grandfather used to say "Every Day's A Bonus" and we have that saying up in our homes in my family and I know that it is difficult to see your illness as a gift when the pain is there but it has allowed you to "SEE" the bonus each and every day...

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  15. I am so sorry to hear you are struggling, my granny said the same thing, usually about me as i'm small myself ;). She also sad you appreciate good times better when you have had bad times, not always easy to take. Sending hou big hugs. I am having a fun raffle on my blog at the moment. Catherine x

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