On the way to our monthly Mother Daughter book club this evening, my daughter was trying to put her earrings back in. She has to take them out twice a week for karate, and putting them back in can be tricky since her holes try to close up at every opportunity. She was complaining, whining a bit. She was annoyed about having to take them out for karate, jealous of friends who can just wear earrings or not, with no problems.
Complaining and whining are habits I’m trying to help her get over. I told her that I was trying to stop complaining too. I said, “I try to take a deep breath when I’m frustrated, and think of something about the situation that I’m thankful for…even if it seems silly. For example, if I’m annoyed at having to do dishes, I take a deep breath and remind myself that I’m thankful to have a sink and a kitchen, and dishes and food.” We decided that she can be thankful for ears, and the gold studs that my mom gave her, and for a mama that will help her “as soon as we aren’t driving.” A few seconds after deciding what to be thankful for about her earring situation, she was able to get her earring in, and all was well. “See that?” I said. “It’s a thankful miracle! It’s like magic!”
So today – I could complain. I could talk about how taking a sick day used to be about resting and getting better… But how now it’s about resting a little, taking advil, getting a flat tire on the way to pick up kids, stopping at school, covering bulletin boards the guest teacher missed, still going to mother daughter book club, so as not to disappoint, and spending the night catching up on the day-before-state-tests work you missed at school….. but I won’t bore you with my complaints. Instead, I will be thankful.
I am thankful for children who wake me up at 5:30 on my sick day for my cozy bed that I didn't want to leave for the dishes, all the dishes I am thankful for schools that my children have to race to for teachers who will forgive their lateness for husbands who drive them there I am thankful for my washer and dryer for all the clothes that are waiting to be folded for my slippers and jammies and new books I am thankful for doctors who say "Very good, very good, very good." for medicine that will make me drowsy if I decide to try it for my acupuncturist who actually did help me I am thankful for my car (to get a flat tire you need to have a car) for my husband who rushed to get my 4 year old for my parents' car I borrowed I am thankful for bulletin boards to cover for students to encourage for work to do I am thankful.