Writing about death and dying last week made me acutely aware of how much I enjoy living. I’ve been paying close attention to the things that create joy in my heart, and I’ve noticed it’s the small, everyday pleasures that make me happy.
When my little granddaughter wraps her arms around my neck and plants a big, wet kiss on my cheek, my heart swells. When I go to bed in a cold room and snuggle up with my husband under the warm covers, I feel safe and loved. When I clip the last rose of the season and bring it into the house so I can take a photo of it to share with you, it makes me happy.
When you’re caring for someone who cannot care for him/herself, it can be hard to feel enthusiastic about much of anything. But even when your days are filled with tedium and frustration, I suspect if you pay attention, you will find something that makes you smile. Today I’d like for you to try to recognize and give thanks for each little moment that brings you joy. It might be a phone call from a friend, a good cup of coffee, or a word of appreciation from your care receiver. Whatever it is, concentrate on that feeling and hang on to it for as long as you can. It won’t change your situation, but if you can create a little space in your heart and mind to store happy thoughts and feelings, it could make your load feel a little bit lighter.