4 things I’m thankful for…

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SO as we’re doing 2 things we’re thankful for for 30 says and I am 1 day late unfortunately. Yesterday was such a mix of things. I had a paper (on communication) due… the irony… and I had to make a couple of dishes for the special Holy Day evening we had as well as something we call “De-leavening” this time of year which symbolises the putting out of sin (Yes, keep reading, this was never meant to be a religious blog but it comes up occasionally). It’s similar to spring cleaning. This all had to be done before sundown. I remember at 6pm it felt so different than what my life was like the first thing that morning. So many things happened in that short amount of time.
However I’ll be honest with you, as much as I like this “being thankful” project today… after skipping a day I had to mentally fight harder against painful and upsetting and angry thoughts. I have been saying in previous posts how I feel a change already and I do… but I can see that I still need more work. I’m not done.

So what am I thankful for?

  1. Honesty. I can’t go into detail with this, but today I felt overwhelmed by some people in my life being disingenuine. I was ready to make war, and through centering myself I was able to work my way through it in reminding me of the honesty that is… and still is.
  2. Peace. There is a friend who I haven’t seen in a few months who just gave me a dose of peace while I was around them. I had just written down some difficult things that were in my mind was working through – one of them was about being in a large group of people I all knew and although I could see many people greeting each other, I felt very alone. I had to wrestle with these thoughts which is why I am doing this project of finding things I am thankful for. I knew it was negative thinking and I was trying to find a way out of it. Thankfully this friend came and found me today and just lifted me up and was so positive – she had no clue what she did for me but I needed it.
  3. My husband, I know I already mentioned we had our anniversary this week but he helped me immensely yesterday so I could get my paper done, as well as many other cleaning projects. I know some women complain their other half does nothing in the way of cleaning – I have a man that is very hands on. I am very thankful for this. (FYI I did get my paper done and turned in).
  4. Harry Potter – I know this sounds silly but my daughter and I are going through the Harry Potter series together (even though she could read them herself. It has opened up so much discussion on what we believe and think and feel and etc. It has been fascinating for me to see her predict what happens next with such accuracy and have an extra subject for us to talk about is. Anyway, we haven’t had a chance to read it very much lately – and tonight we got a chance to get back into it.
    Anyway… it’s silly but it’s been a fun journey even if I’m unhappy with a few outcomes already – we’re on the second last book.

Hope your weekend has turned out splendid, and you are finding things to be thankful for.

 

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A very Important Day!

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Today is an important day for me and continuing on with being thankful for two things each day to change the brain – it will be an easy one but an extremely meaningful one.

  1. It’s our 15th Anniversary today. My husband and I have been through a lot in those 15 years. Crazy things. Yet, the strength we have both had to gain in order to walk through those struggles together has been enormous since I walked down that aisle. We have laughed, cried, whispered and admitted our deepest faults to each other, and when we first started (before we had children) we had quite the yelling matches. Whenever he is down, I am up and whenever I have been down he has been up and we have carried each other through rough waters and dragged each other through fire to get where we are. I couldn’t ask for a better partner in life. He truly knows how to be the best part of our team with how much teamwork it takes to parent our children and lead our family. I couldn’t have asked for a better man. The older he gets the better he gets… I’m pretty sure he’d say the same about me.
  2. This isn’t a religious blog (I never intended it to be anyway) but tonight is the beginning of Passover – and I can’t ignore that when I’m being thankful. washing-feetNo I am not Jewish. I observe the Christian Passover like many others around the world. Recently I stumbled across an philosophy vlog run by one of my favourite soap opera starts (yes, I just admitted I have favourite soap stars). I was somewhat amused and disappointed with his arguments against God’s existence. The funny thing, he has a few things right. He says that if God is as loving and kind as everyone says He is, then his disbelief will be forgiven. I agree with that. There is actually quite a lot of proof that disbelievers aren’t going to hell just for not believing in God. In fact it’s not God’s mission to call everyone right now at this time (I know that’s a shocker for many Christians). I’m kind of excited about God’s plan for everyone, including those that don’t believe in Him yet. This night is extremely important for the fact that Jesus didn’t just die for my sins, but also for the sins of those that don’t believe or have never believed. Someday they’ll get to meet Him and see a better way of life. I am thankful for that.

    Hope you have a lovely day.

1 Week of Thankfulness

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It’s been a whole week of finding two things each day to write down that I am thankful for. Have you been participating? I am surprised that even when people are upset about something I automatically am turning it around. This week we saw Notre Dame burn down and a relative posted a picture of my nephew (not more than 4 years old in the picture) in front of the building, not more than four. So many people gave a crying emoji reaction – but I guess I thought how much I would have loved to bring the children to have seen it – and thought how lovely that my nephew had the experience and picture to prove he had seen the gorgeous building before it burnt down. I can never say that. Now normally I would have sat there feeling sorry for us that I never got a chance to take my children to France and see the beautiful building (how many people get to do that?), but instead just felt happy for all the pictures that my friends were posting of their experiences.

I know I would not have been in that place a week ago. A week ago I would have thought about how we cannot ever afford to go to France and focusing on all my friends who got to go there and we didn’t. I also would have focused on how the world is getting worse and how it may not even be worth going forward with crazy things like Notre Dame and such catching on fire. Even as I write this I think this type of thinking is absolutely extreme and yet I cannot stress enough that when you are depressed – the littlest of things like a building that you have never seen burning in another country can feel overwhelming. That’s the problem with depression. I am seeing though that when people have commented on the radio and articles I have read that if you think of two positive things a day (and write them down) that it has better results than anti-depressants because it can truly change the way your mind things. I have to say I am amazed myself. I have tried many things but nothing that gave me results such as cleaning out closets I haven’t done in 15 years and my husband has even been inspired by me by throwing out things he has never done and we have almost a completely different bedroom. I am able to think clearer and organise better. It seems like such a simple thing to do each day and yet has made such a difference so here we go – here are two things I’m thankful for.

  1. My knee. My left knee has been given me trouble for almost 2 years now since I was dragged by my car (many blogs ago I described this event). I did not get proper physio for it, I had surgery to get all the gravel out of it but still it causes me pain and I have been in considerable pain for about 36 hours. SO what am I thankful for? Today I got free treatment from my brother-in-law = part genius and part chiropractor. Physio hasn’t been able to help me but my brother-in-law is quite advanced in how skilled he is with chiropracting. After seeing him (on his day off) today I have some relief and have Kinesiology tape on my knee – which I am told does magic. I have had some relief in this.
  2. My son wrote me a note today – there are no words… only this: note
    How blessed am I? I mean really? A 9 year old still trying to do what he can to make me smile. (P.S. The answer is “Good Job, Now Reward” and the Reward was a lolly/candy on top of kisses and hugs). Now I’m hoping that if I don’t get an assignment in tomorrow (yes I went back to school), then maybe I can submit this picture as proof that I was busy? – one can hope.
    Hope you are having a blessed Wednesday…

The Brain Changing – day 6

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There has been so much clarity on day 6 of feeling thankful. I have recognised thoughts I would normally have and realise I have a different perception. For example if my children break something or even a difficult driver in front of me. I feel less frustration than normal… more things feel “doable”.

Today, I tackled a side table next to me that had been accumulating in dust. I usually get overwhelmed easily but today I felt like doing it, and I wasn’t mad about not finishing it. The neater I find my house and the quicker it takes me to find things, or clean things or pick up things the more “doable” life feels. It seems so simple but strange at the same time. I didn’t think the simplicity of having a neat home would make me feel more thankful and yet I had to be more thankful to feel like cleaning it.

How can this exist? I used to hate my house. I hated the colour, the temperature (yes, no air conditioning or heating) and just felt uncomfortable. Now with the fix of our air conditioning and heating, and cleaning up the most used but least seen part of our house (the closet) I find myself motivated to do more. I appreciate the comfort in temperature. I appreciate finding clothes I need easily as I am not searching past all the clothes that don’t fit or that are out of date anymore. When the smaller things come easily, then other bigger tasks don’t seem as hard. When I feel like my house is providing me comfort – even as simple as temperature – I want to make it comfortable.

Anyway… small changes have led to bigger changes… my house is coming along and I am so excited soon to have people over instead of dreading the thought of people seeing my messes.
So what two things I am thankful for today that are changing my brain?

  1. Reverse cycle air conditioning – I love that there seems to be a purpose of “comfort” in my house, even if it’s just temperature. I don’t know if you can truly appreciate this unless you have gone through a winter and a summer (like we have) without either. Blankets and iced water has been our options to keep us cool and warm depending on the weather. It’s lovely when your home as a whole (like a heater or air conditioning) that can do this. It feels like the house is there for your comfort. It changes your perception of the purpose of your house, and helps you appreciate it more.
  2. I appreciate our librarians – which is why I’m launching a bit of a book club. Today we went there. It was quite funny because my daughter (who can get quiet) tried to explain to me she lost her library card… I didn’t quite understand, but being the smarty pants she is I said “you have memorised your library card number – just punch it in and we can check-out. Sure enough the machine wouldn’t let her and said to seek staff. I found the librarian and asked her what the problem was. The problem was that my daughter had left her library card somewhere in the library and they found it and locked it in a draw and it alerted them when she tried to check books out. When they got her card they noticed it was falling apart (it’s only 8 years old) and they got her a beautiful newly designed one. My daughter was lamenting that she had her old number memorised and would have to memorise a new number. Our wonderful and librarian searched through all the new cards to find a number that was easily memorisable. How lovely was that? I that eased my daughter’s anxiety considerably. Anyway… I am thankful for librarians who put children at ease over the silliest of things so that they can love books as much as they do. That was the ultimate motivation “Have a new number that you can memorise and feel at ease with so you can check out more books”. Anyway, Librarians will never get enough credit in my opinion… but I love them and love how much they have inspired my children.

    Hope your Tuesday was just as lovely,
    Happy Tuesday!

Thankful Day 5

 

So I am on day 5 of writing two things that I am thankful for and already my mind feels like it’s benefitting and changing. I notice things that I would normally feel frustrated or worried about seems a lot more doable.
One thing that has benefitted from all this thankfulness is I felt for the first time in 15 years like I could clean my closet. I unfortunately didn’t take any before photos as I didn’t think I would have the energy to finish and I thought I was just doing a small corner. The more I got into my closet the more I felt so happy that I was throwing old things out. I can actually see what clothes fit me (as you can see, I have a lot of pink things). I haven’t seen the floor of that closet in so long. It was nasty and dusty but I kept going.

One thing I have noticed in is that clutter (which we have a lot of) does in fact cause a lot of anxiety and depression. The other thing that studies have found is that there is a direct correlation to clutter and weight gain. Weight is the other thing I am working on and hopefully I have burned a few calories working on throwing things out.

Currently, as I am typing this – we have two electricians putting in air conditioning into our house. Our house is a mess with things moved everywhere as the electricians are getting into it. It is comforting that one thing I have NEVER EVER worked on fully cleaning – my closet is clean. I cannot stress enough how exciting it is to see the floor in my closet. 15 years people! I know that sounds horrible but when you realise that most of your life you are “coping” with health issues and depression and etc… so much, including your closet can be overwhelming. However, making these changes and decluttering really can decrease that stress. It’s a bit of a catch 22.
Anyway, I did not talk to my stuff like Marie Kondo suggests but I did mentally say goodbye to it all and tell myself “It has served it’s purpose”.

Anyway, if you haven’t noticed already my two things I am thankful for is:

  1. Feeling capable and not overwhelmed when cleaning something that seemed like a big task for me in the past.
  2. organised shoes in my closet.

I’m sure tomorrow I will be thankful for the air conditioning/heaters being installed currently but that’s another post for tomorrow.

If you need inspiration to tidy and clean here are a few people who help:

All things Marie Kondo

Shannon Lush and Jennifer Fleming cleaning tips

Thankful 3 & 4

 

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AS I have missed a day (I was out of the house all day), I will write two days worth of being thankful. This is part of the 30 days of being thankful to rewire the brain.
So here it goes:

Saturday:
1. I made a delicious breakfast with hash browns, smoked beef and scrambled eggs. I was thankful for the eggs my chickens give me. We have some beautiful chickens that although I can sit and get annoyed with how loud they are sometimes – not allowing me to sleep sometimes – I am so thankful that they lay the most delicious and healthy eggs.

midnight
Midnight, one of our laying hens.

I then thought about how blessed I was to have such a beautiful breakfast and how many others can’t even afford to eat. I was also thankful that on a Saturday morning – I wasn’t too rushed and had time to make myself a decent meal.

 

 

2. I was thankful that I had friend who expressed their appreciation of my friendship with them. As much as I am thinking about being thankful, it’s nice to hear on a rare occasion that people are thankful for you.

Sunday (Today):
1. The first thing I checked on was my husband today. He was extremely ill and vomiting yesterday, all day and we’re all unsure as to why as he ate what we ate for dinner on Friday night, and no one else got sick. I am thankful that he is able to stomach food today and that he is at least up and out of bed. He is still quite sore and feeling weak but I am thankful that the majority of his suffering has stopped and he is on his way to feeling better.

2. While my husband was sick last night and the children were in bed I had free reign with the TV, and decided to put on a quality show. I miss old shows, because now I feel like there is so much shock and gratuity with today’s shows in order to keep the audience’s attention. A show that provides me comfort, philosophical thought and complex relationships is (and yes I’m a nerd) Star Trek – Next Generation (Season 1). So I started watching that. However my husband found the case this morning and said he wanted to watch it with me so it looks like I’m going to have to rewatch some of the episodes I watched last night. Besides the early 90s outfits and hair, and a few interesting special effects – it is still quite an amazing show.
SO what was I thankful for, just having time to myself – to choose to watch whatever I wanted without taking a vote, and finding an old favourite.

Anyway,

Hope you are doing your 30 days of being Thankful, and finding that your brain is rewiring and your perception is changing.

Thankful – day 2

 

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Continuing on rewiring my brain and doing the 30 days of writing down what you are thankful for… I am on day 2!

1. I am living in Australia and in the United States there was a prolonged winter – we had a prolonged summer. Which sounds great in theory however in reality a lot of farmers were in drought, a lot of crops did not get enough rain, food became more expensive and to bring it home in a very selfish manner – we had a broken air conditioning and were sweating daily. So Today I am thankful for autumn finally showing up and becoming cooler – the rain getting to the farmers last week and not feeling like I’m dying of heat in my own home. I am thankful that fruits and vegetables are on their way to being more affordable and their usual prices. I am thankful for feeling comfortable – with the temperature. I am thankful the thirsty land is being fed.

2. The other thing I am thankful for was that I finally sent off my signed contract for work coming up next term. We did the math and as I am a casual worker, if they call me in (as I am “substitute staff”/supply staff) just 5 days out of the month – our whole budget forecast changes. We will not be dependent on family to financially survive but will be able to save for the first time in years. This is super exciting for us. Term two doesn’t start for another couple of weeks but it’s exciting that there is a possibility for us to not be financially dependent on others. If you haven’t experienced being assisted financially I cannot tell you how depressing it can become. It is extremely painful and am thankful for the possible opportunity to change this part of our lives.

 

Hope you have found two things to be thankful for today and that your brain is being rewired in a good way.