I’m currently crawling out of the very real cloud of post-partum anxiety and depression. Today was a beautiful day; not for any particularly spectacular reason, it just wasn’t gloomy. It was comforting.
I’ve always enjoyed motivational speakers and grew up as a baptist Christian who went to bible camp and Sunday school. I strayed, stumbled, traveled and researched, until I happened to return when I came upon a church I love in my new home town. And I love it! I’m hooked. It’s no surprise then, that I felt compelled to read a book by Joel Osteen, the pastor of that massively huge church on tv. Yes, I think it’s all a bit much but if it brings joy and life to people it is doing good in the world and that’s okay by me.
The book I’m reading is Every Day a Friday and it’s what most would classify as a self help book of sorts. I don’t know why but I love self help books. Not because I think they’ll truly change me but because I find it fascinating to read all of the different methods/opinions/reasons surrounding how we can live happier, healthier and with purpose. It’s interesting trying to decipher why we humans still struggle with such basic problems when we have everything we need. This particular book focuses on finding and exuding happiness through Christ.
Joel has a way with words, which is obvious based on his success. But one line that struck me tonight while reading in bed was about being, “too blessed to be stressed.” I stopped and took a note. How accurate is that? With all of the terrible, devastating things happening around this world of ours, I am BLESSED.
I am blessed even in comparison to those here in our small sphere of influence. I have my health. I have a wonderful family. I have a roof over my head and food in my and my family’s bellies. We are cared for and taken care of; we have all we need to be happy. So why do we keep searching for more? We compare, the media feeds us this or that and we suddenly feel inferior and sad. Something makes us feel less than our true worth. We crave this or desire that. But what on earth to we have to complain about? NOTHING because we’re blessed.
It’s time I applied some of this knowledge to my actual, day to day life, so here’s my plan: this entire week I’m going to not complain. Yes. It sounds silly when I type it out, but complaining as an adult is tantamount to a toddler whining. We’ve just changed how we do it as we aged. Crummy things happen and will continue to happen. My goal is to try to embrace the crumminess with a smile, not in weakness but in strength. It’s hard to “be the bigger person,” or the one who stays positive but that’s why I’m doing this. Through difficulties one can hope to build character.
Joel also mentions how we “receive back what we put out,” and I want to recieve light and positivity; NOT negativity. I can’t change those around me, therefore I’m digging into my own psyche to try and repair these habits of complaining I’ve created. Lately that revolves around some of the difficulties surrounding motherhood. Early wake ups after little sleep, tantrums in public and a lot of frustration; all things moms deal with often, but what does it mean? It means I was blessed with two healthy, growing baby boys. If they are my life and make me so happy, I can try to feel that way more often instead of focusing on the hard parts.
My daily struggles aren’t any less real, they’re still going to present themselves (and often at the most inconvinient times), but this week my goal is how I react. How will it affect my kids? My husband? But maybe most of all, how will it affect me?