the simple practice of gratitude

i hate it when i take out my frustration on those around me.  tonight i was a jerk to jesse on the phone.  i chose to be selfish instead of communicating my sadness and disappointment.  i just went for acting entitled.

i desperately want to take time to write out what i heard and learned last weekend at the hearts at home conference.  since i arrived back in town that night, i have been going going going without barely a moment to breathe.  i am starting to feel like there is so much to do that i am shutting down and unable to do any of it. does that make sense?  i find myself losing minutes.  walking in to a room and just standing there trying to remember what i needed to do.

today was about stopping the busyness and just being with my kiddos.  we played with legos for three hours this morning.  it was refreshing and just plain fun.

it was his birthday

it was his birthday

i was the enemy trying to capture the princess (gia).  luca the knight saved her everytime.  :)  i think my running commentary with lots of dramatic voices amused all three littles.

but tonight i just jumped right back in to the craziness.  and i am not liking the me that is created by this constant doing.  i am not even going for a perfectly tidy house or amazing homecooked meals or even a daily shower.  just trying to not be buried.  i know there has to be a way to change this crazy life.  but how do i stop long enough to figure out what needs to change.

my busy night

 my busy night

so here i am with my six loads of laundry folded and three more needing to be brought down to the basement.  to join the three still waiting by the washing machine.

right now, i have friends traveling to far away lands, dealing with major life upheavals, and making radical decisions.  i am trying to keep perspective.  my issues are so small compared to theirs.  so small compared to the majority of the world.  i believe the lie that tells me i am entitled to more.  that it is okay to put my needs above others.  but i want to practice gratitude rather entitlement.  i want to be thankful in all situations.  does that make sense?  not faking it.  not wearing rose colored glasses. but truly finding something to be thankful for in each situation.  to be grateful for what i have and for what God has done.

just some light thinking on a wednesday night.  the day my firstborn turned five.  a day i did not wear green or eat corned beef.  a day that was good and real and hard and blessed.  if this post felt all over the place, it is probably because my mind is all over the place.  and instead of getting annoyed with myself for not being able to think coherently, i will be grateful that i have a place to share my struggles.

thanks for reading.
xoxo,
annalea

4 comments:

Peeper said...

Gratitude has become a huge theme for me this year. Last year was a rough one for us. At the turn of the new year I made a list of all the things that went right in 2009. It was a fresh perspective and apart from all the time I spent feeling sorry for myself the year before. Luckily, the new attitude has persisted with no dedicated effort on my part. On a bad day at work I am thankful I have a job when so many don't. When my daughter wakes in the night I thank God she is healthy and alive.
It doesn't altogether stop the flood of frustration and anger certain situations can bring but pausing to replace those negative feelings with a positive one has really made a difference for me. I am happier - even when I am buried.

One thing at a time....

~april said...

thatk you for such an honest post. i think we all feel like that sometimes, worn down by life, tired(more than tired), feeling burdened. hills and valleys...just remember, hills and valleys...events, circumstances etc all change. there is nothing constance except God's love.
btw, we have the same ikea hampers and i love them! i have only had to replace one after several years of ues/abuse. i saved the metal part and am going to make a luggage rack out of it for our guest room someday (when i have the energy)!

Lora said...

i TOTALLY understand!!! thanks for reminding me that i am not alone!

Jennifer said...

You're right. Laundry is hard. Dishes are hard. They come after all the good things...or at least that's how I often see it. But I know there are a lot of super heroes and princess dresses in that laundry and wonderful meals and memories in the dishes. Maybe if laundry could be a reminder of fun days (the new dress you made out of your old shirt, the pink princess dress that's a little too big) and an in between, so the next time your kids (and you) will look just as cute (if not cuter because you always find new combinations to dazzle us). It won't always work, but it's something different to be thankful for than just having the clothes, having the memories that go with the clothes and the hopes of new memories to come.

Miss you. Remember your life is beautiful and blesses everyone else's (especially mine!)

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