Choosing to be Grateful


I always find it funny when I begin to write for this blog; I am a very organized person, I have a whole calendar set up with topics for what to blog about... typically I stick with those topics.  Then there are days like today, I had 90 mins to kill before meeting a dear friend for a much overdue lunch; I decided to stop at a nearby Starbucks to grab a cold brew (try the coconut one, it is awesome- and 50 cals!) and sit and start my blog, go over a few other things that need my attention and write my WAY overdue newsletter (I am getting that out this weekend, sorry for those that subscribe... life happens and it has been happening a lot recently).  I grabbed my coffee, sat down with all of my electronics and began listening to the women sitting next to me,  then I tuned into the group of girls that were across from me... now I am not eavesdropping, I like to hear what people talk about, I find the human mind fascinating.   The good, the bad and the ugly... it all is interesting to me.  I question a lot of things, why do people act/do the things they do?  What caused them to become who they are?  Nurture? Nature? Can someone be so hurt by life and the circumstances they are dealt that their personality changes?  It ALL intrigues me.  

As I sit here, in a Starbucks in Cave Creek, Arizona I can not help but try to understand WHY our of the 5 groups of people here, in every single one there is a person COMPLAINING.  Complaining about things that I am sure are HUGE to them... and while listening to them complain about their job, the fact that they have to go to college, that they have a car that is in the shop, that they have to drive 40 mins to get their kids to activities, that they had to pay $2,000 to fix a problem at their house, that they don't have enough time to make it to get their nails done; the list goes on and on.  I have only been here for 30 minutes and I have heard all this and more... In my mind I keep thinking how there is someone, somewhere, that would LOVE to have these "problems".  Someone that would love to be able to afford to just get coffee at Starbucks; someone who would LOVE to have a job, no matter how terrible; someone that would love to have car issues, simply because they have a car!  Someone that would give their right arm to HAVE kids to run to activities.  At what point do you look at life and become GRATEFUL for the (perceived) struggles, issues, problems?  What does it take to "wake up" (for lack of a better term)?  

We have all had hard times, we all have struggles, issues and problems... I have had my share as well.  The change for me came when my father had a quadruple bypass two years ago.  It was totally unexpected, he was in the hospital for 16 days, 2 of which he was kept sedated because after discovering he had 4 major blockages, the doctors also discovered he had kidney disease, heart disease, COPD and had a minor stroke.  That was when I learned that you need to take a step back and really look at the circumstances that you are complaining about.  How can you turn the troubled moments in your life into a something positive?  It has taken me awhile, but I have learned quickly to be grateful for the challenges, struggles, issues and problems in my life.  I can honestly say that I can look at any situation I have been in and see the "silver lining".  I know that this may drive some people crazy... do I get down?  Yes!  Do I get mad?  Yes!  Do I ask the powers that be "why"?  YES!  But my "whys" from the energy of "why me? why now?" has turned into "why? what is my lesson, what am I learning? how will this impact my life?"  Is it worth sitting in a Starbucks complaining that your car is in the shop? Or that you have to take your kids to activities? Or that you hate what is happening at your job?  Guess what!  YOU have the POWER to CHANGE your LIFE!  YOU can start looking for the silver lining... YOU can turn the way you perceive things around... really you can!  

One of my mentors said during a class "Life is happening FOR you NOT TO you!"  That saying has stuck with my for years.  Every time I find myself slipping into old thought patterns, the "why me? what did I do?" syndrome, I quickly remind myself this is FOR me.  My list of struggles is no different that other peoples.... beginning at a early age (10 years old) I was bullied for 4 years because of my weight, now they would call it "body shaming" and yes, it has affected my adult life and my relationships over the years.  I have been in a emotionally and verbally abusive relationship, I have had relationship issues with relatives, I have been cheated on by my first husband, I have been divorced, been a single mom, had my car repossessed, been given notice of eviction, been in an abusive work place, had trouble conceiving... I suffered from anxiety (and now have had that under control).  I have watched my father in the last few months battle cancer... I have my stories too.  I have made the conscience decision to find the lessons and be grateful for ALL OF IT.  It all happened FOR me; I am stronger, wiser, calmer and am able to help others move though the difficult times in their lives.  

I am always eternally grateful for the lessons I learn from each challenge in my life.  So, my question to you.... are you ready to turn your thoughts around?  

As Always, Love & Light...


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