Sunday, November 21, 2010

Counting Blessings

All of us in this picture have taken turns having stomach flu since this picture was taken during the Achter Family Photo Session 2010 three nights ago. Grace believe it or not was throwing up two hours after and didn't stop until about 2 A.M. that night. It was her first bout with anything besides a nasty cold and it was fairly distressing as her mom to watch her shake her little head and cry, "No no no!" every time she felt the urge to empty her stomach.

Maybe I think too much, but I have always found getting sick enough to be laid up a very humbling experience every time it happens to me. I end up pondering how thankful I am for the strength and feeling of well-being I generally have the rest of the time to get done the things that I need to and make note not to take it for granted. I think of people I know who have been chronically ill and gain a new respect for what they have endured. When it all comes down to it, I get a little depressed and can't wait to feel well again. One night this week sometime around 2:30 or 3 in the morning I was making an effort to lift my spirits by counting my blessings, which were SO many, like...

It's a blessing to be living in my parents' home right now. The day I was most wiped out, I was able to just sleep and know Gracie was being supervised. I know that once motherhood comes along, you don't always get to just sleep even if you're sick. This day I could and I did!

Also, the night Gracie threw up over the side of her crib, a whole team assembled in the house to help clean the bedding and carpet and everything else that had been in the path of disaster. People ran to the grocery store to stock up on fluids for when her stomach settled while I got Gracie cleaned up.

Sure I felt like garbage, but I had a warm home and several quilts on my bed on a cold night.

I had no obligations that would be difficult to cancel (that is code for no sub plans to write, calling back from my teaching days).

My husband made me my favorite comfort food, rice pudding. I shouted directions from the couch while he made sense of the recipe in the kitchen and I love him for it.

And probably my most favorite of all, though it was difficult, I was thankful for the opportunity to care for my daughter in the middle of the night. I always wondered as a little girl how my mom did that for me. I remember her being by my side as I emptied my own stomach into a bucket in the middle of the night and thinking, I bet she'd rather be in bed. I didn't think I'd ever be able to be able to do it myself. But I am thankful for the sense of duty that calls when you're a mom that helps you feel like it's more like an honor than a sacrifice of sleep to sit up and comfort that little person you love so much.

The one sacrifice that did hurt? My mom and I had made arrangements to get up almost in the middle of the night to meet President Bush on Friday morning at a book signing. The bug hit Thursday and it didn't happen.

Ouch. It still hurts. Gracie, you're worth it.


Erin said...

So sad you didn't get to see George W. but so glad you're all feeling better now.

Lisa said...

Wow. It's true some nights I don't know where the strength comes from. I think it's seeing our cute babies faces. And I agree, I think being a stay at home mom/teacher is the BEST!