Wednesday, 6 July 2011

A Lesson in Gratitude

By now, I think you are well aware that we had a pretty fantabulous Canada Day here at Shenanigans Inc.  It was a shenanigan-filled day with lots of laughter and plenty of smiles.  But what you may not be aware of is how I woke up that morning in one terribly awful, foul mood.  I woke up that morning unable to greet the day with my usual sun-shiny disposition and wanting nothing more than to bury my head under the blankets and lie there waiting for the day to pass. I just didn't think I could get up and take care of my family with so much grief bearing down on my heart.

You see, for two years now my sweetheart and I have been trying to have another baby.  We spent the first year in countless doctors appointments enduring a number of invasive tests and, ultimately, wrapped it up with one final surgery that was going to end my infertility once and for all.  We were elated!  A baby by summer was all we could think of, and it consumed me.  Every night I would get on my knees and plead with my Heavenly Father for this miracle to happen.  Every night I would drift off to sleep with visions of kissing chubby baby cheeks and holding a warm little body in my arms once again.

But it hasn't happened.

And month after month I discover that I am not pregnant.

Some months, I can shrug it off and say "Oh well, perhaps next month".

But other months, I can not bear the disappointment and my friends fear, despair and doubt show up to help me kick off the pity party.

This is how I woke up on Canada Day.

I wanted to roll over and let each of them take a kick at me.  The pain was better than the subsequent emptiness that inevitably follows one of these parties.

But, I didn't.  I dragged my butt out of bed and resolved that this would not break me.

I can do hard things!

I jumped in the shower and allowed my tears to be washed away by the hot water.

With fear, despair and doubt now neatly tucked away, I walked out into my kitchen determined to make the best of a difficult day.

Unfortunately, even though I had bid farewell to my three unwanted guests, their absence left me irritable, and when mama is cranky no one is happy.  I felt terrible.  I could see how my foul mood was affecting everyone around me, but I didn't know how to turn it around.  I guess in my prayers that morning I forgot to ask Heavenly Father to not only help me endure the day but to do so joyfully . . . oops! So, I left my family to discuss our plans for the day and I gave myself a time-out on the deck with my Iphone.  Ahhh . . .  the sweet distraction of technology.  As I was scrolling through my Twitter updates, a blog caught my eye and so I creeped.  The blog was written by a woman who had not one but two severely disabled sons, one of whom had passed away three years ago.  As I scrolled through the pictures of her sharing her day with her son who is unable to speak or walk, I was truly humbled.  Here was a woman with an actual burden to bear and she was carrying it with joy.  I was so ashamed.  How I could be so ungrateful?  Why do I feel entitled to get everything I want when I have already been given so much?  So for the second time that day, I walked back into my kitchen, but this time simply enduring the day was no longer my objective, I was determined to enjoy it . . . and I did just that!

 I may not have the number of children I want, but I have children.  I have healthy children, and I am going to enjoy every minute I have with them.

If you, too, need a lesson in gratitude, read her blog.  You just may never complain again.



  1. Hey Krista, I know your pain intimately. For 7 years we lived with the monthly lotto. We had the joy and then pain of two not to be pregnancies, but in between them we got Elizabeth. We've truly been blessed, not just with her but with 2 healthy boys also. I greatly admire and respect your attitude to enjoy what you have, knowing just how difficult that can be some days. I think you're doing an amazing job with the spirits you've been gifted with and pray if it's in Heavenly Father's plan for you, you have many more! You're a terrific mom!!

  2. Didn't know you were going through these trials Krista...glad you found some peace and through someone else...ointment for the daily sores comes from many different bottles..