The Choice to Be Grateful

So…have you read the First Presidency Message by Elder Eyring for December yet? If not, it is good.

Yesterday, we had talks on gratitude in our sacrament meeting, and one of the speakers brought up this talk. I felt prompted to go home and read it.

Anyways…This is the time of year where we actually think about being grateful. That is really great. Thanksgiving is a nice day…Then, Black Friday comes, and it seems like we start worrying about Christmas presents and $$$. Does this happen to you? The feeling of abundance and gratitude takes a backseat to the “stress of the holidays”.

To me, it feels ridiculous.

I’m glad that we were reminded to be grateful – even after Thanksgiving.

So – to prolong the spirit of thanksgiving and to develop an attitude of gratitude, I’m going to list things I’m grateful for – periodically throughout the month. (Who knows, maybe even longer). This is based on the application for the youth in The Choice to be Grateful message by Elder Eyring.

Ten Physical Abilities I am Grateful for

  • Having Children – I know that not everyone enjoys this opportunity in their lives – for various reasons. I have had four children. My pregnancies became progressively more difficult, but each time I was able to deliver a happy, healthy child. Three beautiful girls and one scrumptious boy. It is amazing to think that I brought them into this world.
  • Running – Okay, so I’m not the best runner these days. I really struggle with running even three miles. But that is primarily caused by reason number one…However, I can still run, and I know that with time, weight loss, and training, then I will be able to run again. It sounds crazy, as running is pretty simple, but I feel like taking a simple run is one of the best ways we can appreciate our physical health.
  • Painting – Again, I’m not some kind of virtuoso or master at painting, but I like it. I love creating – especially something pretty and colorful. It is a nice way to express myself. Here is something I’ve painted recently… This painting also goes with my next point…
  • Laughing I love laughing. I love laughing at just about everything on earth. It may not seem obvious in this blog, but I have a strong sense of humor, and laughing is just about as important to me as the gospel is. I’m grateful that the Lord has blessed me with a sense of humor and the ability to tell a joke.
  • The ability to see – I had 20/20 vision until I had my first daughter – at like age 23. After that, I needed to wear glasses. My second child caused my eyesight to really deteriorate, although nothing too serious. I just need to wear glasses/contacts most of the time. Anyways. After I got glasses the first time, I was amazed at how clear the world was around me.

    My husband is super-duper blind. Well, not legally, but it has dawned on me that if he had lived at Christ’s time, then he probably would have been one of the blind people begging for help from others. He can’t see a thing without glasses.

  • The ability to hear – I love music. There are some noises I’m not fond of, but I realize that if I couldn’t hear the sounds I hated, then I wouldn’t be able to hear the sounds I love.
  • The ability to play the piano – Playing the piano is challenging, interesting, beautiful, and fun. I love the spirit that music brings into the home. One of my favorite things about playing the piano is thinking as I play. I am able to think about anything while I play the piano. Playing the piano is extremely therapeutic for me – almost as much as physical exercise.
  • The ability to taste – It is nice to be able to taste interesting foods. Sometimes, I get a little carried away by my appetites. Although, even as I write this, I realize how, when I’m controlling my appetite, everything tastes better. When I’m being a glutton, it seems like nothing tastes good enough.

    As an Italian, I have inherited a strong sense of taste. I love garlic, olives, chocolate, cheese. I love good food. I am grateful that my husband also loves good food.

  • The ability to smell – My mom can’t smell anything. Sometimes, this seems like it would be kind of nice (like when changing poopy diapers). But I’m glad that I can smell. For example, I don’t know if there is anything better than the smell of violets in the springtime.
    I love the way that my kids’ hair smells (when they aren’t gross and sweaty).
    I love the way that my husband smells.
    I love smelling good. I love perfume.
    And all of these good things wouldn’t smell nearly as great without smelling some of the stinky things.
  • I am grateful for the ability to feel – Is there anything more calming than a tender touch? Is there anything more hallowing than experiencing pain. I’m grateful that I can feel. I’ve been able to feel really good – which is ideal. I have also endured what I consider to be horrible pain (Kidney stones! Ovarian Cysts bursting!). As much as that pain hurts, I have learned to be grateful – at least I can feel. At least I’m alive. It seems tempting to think that it would be great to go through this life without feeling pain, but I wouldn’t give it up if that meant I would feel nothing at all.

There is so much to be grateful for. And I’m realizing, that as I count my blessings, I need to count them fully – that many of the blessings I have experienced have come with challenges. Although the challenges have been difficult, I can see how they have brought richness to my life.

What physical abilities are you grateful for?

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2 Comments

  1. I’m grateful for the ability to breastfeed, it’s such a wonderful sweet thing to share with your little one.

    Reply
  2. Your painting is pretty cool!

    I totally ditto your running, laughing, hearing, playing the piano, tasting, smelling and feeling.
    I’m grateful I can talk. And write. And type fairly quickly. Yaaaaay for communication!!!

    Reply

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