Saturday, April 21, 2012

Bee-Worthy Share: The Gratitude Movement

In wrapping up National Volunteer Appreciation Week, which was mentioned in Thursday's post, I felt that a heavy dose of reminders to be grateful in every aspect of our lives would be appropriate. 

"Real life isn't always going to be perfect or go our way, but the recurring acknowledgement of what is working in our lives can help us not only to survive but surmount our difficulties."

--Sara Ban Breathnach

This is something that I struggle with constantly, as do many other parents of children with medically complex conditions... being grateful for the things that are going right, and looking at the things that are seemingly wrong as being right at the same time. (got that?) Personally, I instead find myself dwelling on all the reasons why things are not as perfect as I anticipated...

...that is, until I realize that everything is perfectly perfect... 

even if completely imperfect to most. (if you weren't already having to re-read amongst the confusion) 

You are lying if you say that you are exactly where you expected to be prior to being where you are. Aside from that simple point, who asks to be a parent of a child who is born with a condition deemed completely incompatible with life... one that is given an expiration date. 


speaking for myself, I am happier than I have ever been in my entire life. I have the eyes to recognize what's important, the patience to sustain through the uncontrollable, the strength to fight for what I believe in, and most importantly, the ability to rid my life of those constant negativities which plague my days and bring me down. I know, which is what makes this topic of most importance, that negativities have no place in a happy life... and we don't have time in this life to waste being unhappy! That's right, I realize that I control my days... even if they're completely out of control! (and I assure you that they stay the latter!)

Something, or someone, I wanted to share: the author of the above quote, that began this rambling, is Sarah Ban Breathnach whom is noted as being the founder of the Gratitude Movement. 

The GRATITUDE MOVEMENT?? Immediately, I'm intrigued... with a little more gratitude, this world would be amazing! Here is a little blip about her, in all her amazing glory:

"Sarah Ban Breathnach, author of the #1 New York Times best selling book, Simple Abundance is recognized as the founder of the Gratitude movement and was named “One of America’s Most Fascinating Women of Power and Influence” by George Magazine in 1998. Sarah’s work celebrates quiet joys, simple pleasures and everyday epiphanies which speak to women around the world. Sarah’s contributions have been recognized around the world and her book has been translated into 27 languages. Sarah founded the Simple Abundance Charitable Fund and is the publisher of Simple Abundance Online, a membership community of kindred spirits who recognize the universal truth that all we have is all we need."

Surprisingly enough, I'm hooked... and in case you want to be too, then click HERE for the link to her web site. In the meantime, here's a letter from her to explain the purpose of her site a bit more clearer:

Dearest Friends,

Welcome to Simple Abundance Online… For many women today, daily life has become a constant tug-of-war between duty and desire. Which comes first—fulfilling the expectations of others or honoring your own authentic needs and wants?

At the heart of Simple Abundance is the belief that true contentment lies not at some distant horizon, attainable only by immense sacrifice, but is found all around us. It exists in the creative choices we make each day and the awareness and appreciation of simple pleasures, bountiful blessings, and everyday epiphanies.

This life-changing discovery comes not from learning a formula or repeating a mantra but from opening the soul, by finding the quiet places in our daily routines—moments of repose when the Authentic Self can reawaken and peek out from the complicated web of life’s frustrations. Only then can we see what surrounds us with a new set of eyes, clear and keenly aware of the comfort that would otherwise go unnoticed.

Each month in Simple Abundance Online you’ll discover a woman’s tapestry of contentment. Home comforts. Earthly delights. Vintage Bliss. Seasonal pastimes. Joyful Simplicities. Saving graces to restore a woman’s harried heart and soothe her frazzled mind.

Simple Abundance is an invitation, a gentle wake-up call, to embrace the life you have with an entirely fresh outlook. I hope you join us.

Sending you blessings and much love,

Sarah Ban Breathnach

Now for just a few things that I am eternally grateful for, that many would not even recognize as being a topic of gratefulness... I am blessed by a little man, and the many people he has brought in to my life, who have helped me see through clearer eyes.

I am grateful for:

~ being capable of reading eyes
~ amazingly understanding daughters who selflessly adjust their days to compensate for events that may get in the way
~ mornings, whether they're cloudy or gray, sunshiny and blue, or dark and dismal... mornings are amazing,  my favorite part of the day as it is a new beginning
~ an overabundance of miraculous, supportive strangers who I can call friends, and even family in some cases
~ an understanding, the ability to just "get it"
~ a more tuned in sense of the world
~ appreciation of the tiniest of moments, and the recognition that that moment will never happen the same again
~ inspiring words that help me through my days
~ love... especially from my amazing best friend, who just so happens to also be my husband
~ enlightenment, that I am forever open to every possibility
~ implanted belief in miracles
~ undying hope
~ having a list this large, which could truly go on forever...

...really, the list is endless in my world. Something as huge as having clean, fresh air to breathe to having food to eat in my pantry... I am grateful for it all. 

And, I am grateful for you all... for reading and following along with my sometimes nonsensical ramblings, which appear amongst those beyond understanding due to the technicality of them all... and I would be even moreso grateful for you all if you would share our foundation blog with 5 other people. Here is the direct link to copy and paste:

What is the most mundane thing you are most grateful for? Share here in the comments section or come on over to our Facebook page and join in the discussion! 

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