Monday, February 9, 2009

Perfect Moment Monday: (Assisted) Gratitude

Have you ever started reading a blog post and within the first sentence, the first words, you find yourself going, Yes! Yes! That is it! That is how I am feeling right now in this moment. And you wonder how this person that you have never meant is somehow existing in that same state that you thought (selfishly perhaps) only existed in your brain?

Bluebird's post was one of the first I read this weekend. And I was so overwhelmed with empathy that I had to stop and read it a few more times to stop projecting and to appreciate her words. And I did. And I do. Listen. She says:
I love our babies. I love them more every day. I didn’t realize that was possible, and it surprises and overwhelms me.

I used to just think of what we’d lost, but now I think of them. My heart feels like its going to burst, and my eyes automatically well up. I’ve been back at work for a month now, and I’ve cried more this week than the three previous weeks combined.

But sometimes now there’s also a slight smile that accompanies the tears.
And I remembered these words as I decided to go out with a friend Friday night. Decided to shed my hairshirt and slip on a sassy top and boots and head into a smoky bar to hear our friends play loud, loud music.

And I remembered Bluebird's words, and I also thought of Dana at Probable Improbabilities and this wonderful knowledge she shared a few weeks ago. When I read this the first time, I thought the timing couldn't have been more perfect for me. But I find, as days go on and I find myself sometimes slipping into sad for too long, or angry at myself for not giving the girls their proper alloted amount of time in my brain on any given day, I keep going back to this concept, this idea:
A lecturer ...raised a glass of water and asked 'How heavy is this glass of water?' Answers called out ranged from 20g to 500g. The lecturer replied, 'The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long you try to hold it. If I hold it for a minute, that's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my right arm. If I hold it for a day, you'll have to call an ambulance. In each case, it's the same weight, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes.' He continued, 'And that's the way it is with stress management. If we carry our burdens all the time, sooner or later, as the burden becomes increasingly heavy, we won't be able to carry on.''

As with the glass of water, you have to put it down for a while and rest before holding it again. When we're refreshed, we can carry on with the burden.
I thought of Bluebird, and I thought of Dana and I thought of Isa and Jovi as I enjoyed the sun of an unusually warm February day Saturday running errands with my radio turned loud. I thought of all of these people as I picked M up early for work and we decided to go out again Saturday night - enjoying being with other people and people-watching and just reveling in the human experience that happens when the clouds clear and the cold fades and there is warm in the air, if only for a moment. And I smiled.

And I stayed smiling as I took a long walk along the river to the cherry grove where we are going to plant 2 flowering cherry trees for the girls once the spring really arrives. And it was impossible not to smile back at people who are smiling at you. Once again, it was so wonderful to be out among people, so many people walking and running and appreciating the pause in the cold and rain and snow.

And I got home just in time to read Mo's Sundays of Grace post and found myself once again going, Yes! Yes! That is it! That is how I am feeling right now in this moment. So thankful for the moments outside, feeling the sun and the air on a beautiful day, so grateful for friends and laughter, so appreciative that, at the end of the day, I am still cancer-free and I cannot ever stop being grateful for that. Not even when I place the infertility blame square on those shoulders. The fact remains: these shoulders are cancer-free.

So here I sit. My weekend is waning. Just a few more moments to go. But Monday morning, I will have a moment to reflect on what a wonderful, blessed and gratitude filled weekend it really was. Thank you, bluebird, Dana, and Mo for shaping this moment.


Go visit Lori from Weebles Wobblog, founder of Perfect Moment Mondays to read where she and others found their moments this week.


Amy said...

What beautiful moments. Thank you for pointing me to the blogs of the moment-holders, and I'm so glad you've had some moments of smiles, some moments of friendship, some moments to revel in the pefection of your beautiful little girls.

Bluebird said...

What a beautiful post! And I am so honored and humbled to have been included in it. Thank you also for making me reflect upon my own words - I said it, and I meant it - but sometimes it takes work to remember it ;)

I'm so happy for your weekend and the time you were able to spend smiling. The sun came at a perfect time, didn't it?

C said...

This was a beautiful post..thanks for sharing

Dani819 said...

Wonderful to hear. Sometimes I think we're so bsy reminding ourselves that it's OK to be sad and angry and scared that we forget that sometimes it's more than OK to be happy. Glad you had your moments.

Lori Lavender Luz said...

I especially love the story about the glass of water. So true.

I'm glad you've been able to put down the load for a bit, and to put on those kicky boots.


And welcome to Perfect Moments! This is exactly what they are about.

Kami said...

Such wonderful moments. I'm glad you got to enjoy and appreciate them.
I'm also glad to know you have such great people to go through this with.

dana said...

I am so happy for the enjoyable weekend you were able to have....and for you to smile. :)

Like, Bluebird, I am honored and truly humbled to have been included in your post, in your moment.

I hope you have a good day today, sweets.

Mo said...


thanks for including me in your post! and thanks as always for your great comments on my posts. i'm so glad you're out there in cyberspace. i learn a lot from you.


Pamela T. said...

Thanks for this post, the reminder that we can put stress in its place and focus on the good things around us...

Dora said...

Beautiful, beautiful post. Good to remember that smiles are free and contagious. You honor your daughters with your good moments as well as with your grief.

B's Mom said...

I nominated you for an award on my blog. I love your posts. I think you are great.

wifethereof said...

Great post!

I wanted to let you know that I'm going to start blogging again and go to invite only because people IRL might find it. Send me an email if you still want to keep reading.

Cara said...

What insight. Gorgeous post and, yes- you must put it down for a moment to survive.

In our meetings I always start with a little speech. In it I say - "We cry, and tears are welcome, but so are smiles and sometimes we even laugh." And we do, because if we don't, we'll be crushed by the weight of that sadness.