5 Things To Be Grateful For

Sometimes it is hard to notice.  The day to day is stressful, there is always something to want more of and it is easy to forego gratitude.  A while ago I began waking up each morning, immediately shifting my mind to things I am grateful for.  Every morning, before I even open my eyes, I mentally list off the things I am grateful for.  Sometimes it is huge things and sometimes it is something as simple as feeling grateful for the sleep I just woke up from.  Sometimes it is hard for me to see through the fog of stress to see the things that make me happy, but looking back on my life when Hayes was here, I feel overwhelmingly grateful for so many things.  I recently read a quote that could not be more true and more applicable to my own situation.  

“Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.”

              -Robert Brault

Isn’t that so how life is?  It is easier to feel grateful when you are seeing things in hind sight.  But, if there is anything Hayes taught me, it is that life is full of little things to feel grateful for!  So, I am launching a 5 Things to be grateful for series.  Once a month I will list off 5 things I am feeling grateful for.  I am hoping it changes my outlook more permanently!  I am hoping it reminds me to be more present and I am hoping it helps me feel more happiness during the dark days and moments.

1 – Reality TV … I know this seems incredibly shallow and unimportant, but you know what?  Sometimes I need the mindless distraction.  Sometimes I need to forget myself and sometimes I need a good laugh.  Reality TV is one of those things for me that allows me to turn my mind off.  When Hayes was in the hospital, I would put him to bed and lie in my little corner of the hospital room and watch my crap.  Lift my mind out of the heaviness of childhood cancer.  It was and still is a magical distraction.

2 – Coke Zero … Here is the devastating thing about Coke Zero, they are discontinuing it.  Steve and I felt like crawling into the fetal position and crying many times today after hearing the news, but we stayed strong and cracked open a few extra cans of burning liquid to show appreciation for our favorite source of “hydration”….in all honesty, it really is something I am grateful for.  Every day, when Hayes would take a nap, I would leave the room, go for a walk and purchase an ice cold fountain drink and the miracle was that they had Coke Zero!  It was my daily vacation from the cancer unit.

3 – Summer Nights …. I am so not looking forward to fall because it means giving up the gift of summer evenings.  I love when the sun is going down and everyone glows gold.  I love how the air is still warm from the day.  I love how lately there has been a slight breeze and birds have been chirping in the trees.  I love laying on the tramp and staring up at the darkening sky and thinking of my boy.  Completely immersing myself in the memories of Hayes.  Escaping for a minute.  It is heaven.

4 – Social Media …  it is so interesting when people have such disdain for social media.  I would have agreed with these people in the past, before Hayes got sick, but I think it is one of the greatest gifts of my life.  Like anything, there are negative aspects, but mostly, it is a network of strangers that love and support one another.  I feel lifted up daily by good people around the world that send me messages of support and love.  I will always be grateful for the community and tribe that lift me up.  I am beyond grateful for each and every one of you.  I thank each of you for your part in my journey.

5 – I-Phone …  no question, my most prized possession outside of my family, is my phone.  Weird right?  But, so, SO true.  The amount of pictures and videos that I have on my phone of Hayes is unbelievable!  Before smart phones, I never took time to document.  But, every detail, every single beautiful moment was captured.  I find a new video at least once a week and a new photo once a day of my perfect little boy.  What an incredible blessing!  That is why, my phone is my most prized possession.  It is my link to my boy.  A promise to myself that I won’t forget.

So those are my 5 things to be grateful for in July.  Life is a series of thousands of tiny miracles.  Notice them.  

4 thoughts on “5 Things To Be Grateful For

  1. Cory

    Hi Savanna….. I love reading your blog. I think I’ve told you before that I wasn’t able to have children, but seeing here on Instagram the stories of these precious children and the fights they have to fight too early in life. I think you and Steve are amazing parents and I think your children are very lucky to have such wonderful people for their Mommy and Daddy.
    I just wanted to comment on this post about you watching reality tv. We DO need to decompress each day. We all have stresses and we all have different way of dealing with it. With myself, I LOVE to read, and I have my Amazon Kindle with me pretty much wherever I go!
    Anyway…. I’m so glad you’re enjoying the summer and taking time to smell the roses!
    I say a little prayer each night for your family and others in the same battle.
    I’m very touched by you and Steve and your honesty and showing your vulnerabilities to loved ones and total strangers, like me!
    My husband and I have 2 pups, so I follow a LOT of dog accounts here on IG, and the dog community is amazing! Strangers loving on omg another… a huge blessing!

  2. rachelnorcal

    I love this post! And please tell me you’ve backed up your phone pics/vids somewhere!! I’m sure you have, but if you haven’t, go do it today! (I’ve saved pics to several different places.. Google Drive, Google Pics, and I think Amazon Prime.. but then I’m still too paranoid to delete a bunch of pics from my phone πŸ˜‰ Oh, and we use the Facebook Moments ‘app,’ too, which is a nice option for sharing photos that you might not want to share with All Facebook Friends πŸ™‚ I think I need to just bite the bullet and do one of those easy photobook things because I’d really like more hard-copy photos around the house. Our niece made us a very sweet little book for the boys’ first birthday (and she used pics that Paul had posted on Facebook so they were already “the best of the best” πŸ™‚ My mom also made each of the boys little photo albums (mostly from last Thanksgiving) which they love to look at because there are lots of pics of their BIG brother “Av-ree! Av-ree!”
    I was already pretty good about practicing gratitude “before” but knowing you and Hayes and the other families we both know who are experiencing the loss of a child … makes me even more aware of the ‘little/big things’… multiple times a day…. So, #1 on my list today is You and your heartfelt reminders of what/*who* is Really Important in the big picture! Thank you xoxoxo

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