Thoughts for My Birthday

I turn 38 this week. I know some think that sounds old, more of you probably think it sounds young. I have had enough hard life experiences though to make me feel much older than I am. I sometimes do not believe how much life has been squeezed into only 38 years.

I have often been told I have an old soul. I agree. I love simple things. I love old music and black and white movies. The fast paced world of today does very little for me. I love living in a small town in a rural part of an agricultural state where life moves slower.

I love a house full of Christmas decorations in the winter and a garden full of vegetables in the summer. I want to be surrounded by my dogs and my kids. I look forward to being the Grandma Betty that bakes cookies the grands love and giving them Christmases at grandmas house that give them happy memories to savor long after I’m gone. I love being my husband’s wive. I love to be home.

As year 37 of my life comes to a close it does not do so without painful memories of experiences life brought me in the last 12 months. It was a difficult year to say the least. It took a toll on me. I’ve gained weight. I’ve lost sleep. I’ve cried many tears. I’m tired. I have anxiety attacks.

I have not counted my troubles though, but my blessings instead.

Counting my blessings, finding joy in the journey; that has been the best medicine for my anxiety, the strongest prescription for my broken heart.

I am broken and changed, but I am happy.

Today I am counting 38 blessings; one for each year. This is my gift to me. This is what I count today.

  1. I am married to man that makes it possible for me to say to my daughters, “marry a man that treats you the way your father treats me.”
  2. My children are happy and smile a lot.
  3. I have a village that is 100 percent committed to all the children in it, including mine.
  4. I like to workout and it makes me feel better.
  5. I have a soft bed.
  6. Although there is no cure for Duchenne, my boys live in a time where treatment is available and research is bringing new and better treatments that may change the outcome for my sons.
  7. We have a chairlift that takes my boys up and down the stairs to play PS4 in the game room.
  8. My children are brave.
  9. My children are not shy.
  10. My husband works hard to provide for our family.
  11. My kids love me.
  12. God is good.
  13. When it is cold outside, I sit inside a warm house.
  14. I have cars that start and that are reliable.
  15. I found a chicken dumpling recipe today that made me remember someone very special. I’m making them on my birthday.
  16. Every time I think I need to paint my living room a new color I remember my oldest saying it wouldn’t look like home if I did.
  17. We’ve given our kids a home, not just a house.
  18. We’ve been happily married for 16 years.
  19. We have access to good medical care.
  20. I have dogs.
  21. My cat sleeps curled up next to me.
  22. I have a husband that hates the cat and still lets it sleep curled up next me.
  23. There is always food in our cupboards.
  24. My children wear clean clothes with no holes.
  25. My kids are in a great school system.
  26. There is a new library in my town. I love to go to the library.
  27. We have a favorite place to eat. Macho nachos are our favorite food at our favorite place.
  28. After 18 years of macho nachos at our favorite place, I can now make them nearly as good a home. There are times when you just need nachos.
  29. I have 6 children. I love having a big family.
  30. My youngest child looks just like me.
  31. My oldest child is a good person. It gives me faith we are doing something right and the youngest 5 will be good people too.
  32. I have hope.
  33. My children know and love their cousins. We love our nieces and nephews.
  34. My husband’s side of the family is my side too. They love me and make me happy.
  35. I have sisters. No matter what, I love them and they love me.
  36. St. Cecilia’s Catholic Church
  37. We have a deck that I can thaw out on when the AC makes me too cold.
  38. That God gave me a heart to count my blessings and not my troubles.

May our blessings, mine and yours always outnumber our troubles!

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