Jim and I were riding in the car listening to Comedy Central Radio, and comedian Katt Williams was talking about how important it is to appreciate what you’ve got in life. It kind of hit home for me because I dropped the ball on two Facebook gratitude challenges – not because I don’t have things I’m grateful for, but in part because I almost feel guilty talking about the things I’m grateful for.
We’ve been so fortunate in our life together. But we’ve faced challenges – for sure. I remember when Brighid was just home from the hospital after a month in NICU, and Jim lost his job. Then our insurance company decided that since our preemie was on room air after four days, they weren’t going to pay any medical bills beyond that point – despite the fact that at four days old, she weighed just barely over two pounds. Gotta love an HMO. We were literally down to our last cents when we were approved for a gas station credit card. While certainly not the cheapest option, it allowed us to grab a few packages of diapers and wipes, a gallon of milk and some eggs, and it helped us let by until we got on our feet.
I’m so grateful for that time in our lives. After freaking out over being new parents to a sick baby and worrying about where the paychecks would come from, we somehow managed to use creative thinking to get us through. And oh my gosh, how I appreciated being able to go into Babies ‘R’ Us a few weeks later to buy a case of diapers!
I think part of the reason Jim and I work after more than 25 years together is because we do appreciate what we have. We’ve lost so many people that were close to us – both of our dads, my sister, close friends – it gives us an appreciative perspective on the time we have with the people we love. We’ve been a step ahead of dirt poor, and learned to appreciate the luxury of a $5 pizza and a free movie rental. And when life has been good and we’ve been able to do things like cruises, trips to Europe, and cross country vacations, not only are we grateful for those opportunities, but there is an appreciation for the ability to provide those opportunities to our girls.
So this is my apology to those of you who challenged me to find three things I was grateful for three days in a row. I cannot think of one thing in my life for which I am not grateful – the good, the bad, the God awful. I’d need more than three days and three things – and I’m grateful to you for understanding how tough a challenge it was for me!