Gratitude Changes Everything!

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“Through the eyes of gratitude, everything is a miracle.”

-Mary Davis

Do you remember the days when you would dream about the things you have now? Look at how far you’ve come! Sometimes, it easy to forget and overlook the good that’s taking place. Life can be overwhelming at times and filled with so much pressure and responsiblity. Taking time to notice and recognize the good can help shift your perspective of your current situation. 

A few years ago on Feburary 28th, my family and I enjoyed a picnic and outdoor walk in honor of Rare Disease Awareness day. Before that year I had never heard of that day but now it’s a huge part of my families story. My oldest daughter was diagnosed with INAD ( atypical) in September of 2020 and our lives haven’t been the same since that moment. INAD also known as Infantile neuroaxonal dystrophy is a rare, genetic neurological disorder. The prevalence is estimated to be about 1 in 1,000,000 in the general population. It affects axons, the part of a nerve cell that carries messages from the brain to other parts of the body, and causes progressive loss of vision, muscular control, and mental skills. There is no cure for INAD and no treatment that can stop the progress of the disease. Getting the diagnosis brought grief, pain, heart ace, stress but also hope because I have seen the miracles working power of Jesus, and I know that He is faithful to do what He has promised. My faith has really kept me at a place of peace throughout this journey, but also having a strong support system has made a huge difference. In December of 2022, my baby girl was dignosed with the same disorder.

Taking the time to reflect and think has helped me to realize how grateful I am for my family and friends.  This journey would be impossible without them. One of the things this journey has taught me is that we are truly better together. Seeing this journey through the eyes of gratitude has really changed my perspective. I am grateful that we don’t have to walk this journey alone. It’s a blessing to have people who are always praying for our family, calling, visiting, babysitting and so much more. No matter how big or small the act of kindness maybe, it doesn’t go unnoticed.  

Another thing that I choose to see with eyes of gratitude is that I am able to be present and do all I can in helping my daughters get the help and the resources they need for this journey. Gratitude has helped me to see what a true gift my babies are despite this diagnosis. I once heard a special needs mom say, ” I am thankful that God has entrusted me with the gift of a special child with unique abilities. God has entrusted me with the lives of three beautiful children and I want to do all I can to give my best to them through this journey. I feel like God always prepares us ahead of time for the journey ahead. Becoming a stay at home mom and everything I have gone through has really prepared me for this journey. It’s not at all easy. In fact, it is one of the hardest parts of my journey. I am thankful that God gives us grace to walk through seasons we may not understand. Even when we are hurting and broken, just realizing what we have right in front of us can help us to see that He has been with us every step of the way. 

These are some things I have been learning about gratitude and how it has helped me in my journey: 

1.) Gratitude helps you to notice the good

When I take time to notice the good that’s in front of me the good gets better. When I look at my support system and all the love and support they give, it is truly amazing. It helps me to recognize that I am not alone.

2.) Gratitude helps you to see opportunities rather than obstacles 

I started to see my opportunity to be a stay at home mom and blogger as a blessing because I am able to have this flexiblity needed for this journey and all the therapy, doctors appointments and daily activities required.  

3.) Gratitude has helps you to focus on the more important things in life 

Although I know that there is no cure for this disease, daily exercise everyday with my daughters has helped to keep them strong. My focus is so critical on this journey. I make it a goal to focus on the controllable and believe God will handle the everything else.

Gratitude has helped me to stay present and enjoy the moments that are right in front of me. It’s helped me to embrace hard things, understanding that I am not alone. Gratitude has also helped me to notice the good in this everyday journey. I want to encourage you to take time and reflect on the things you are grateful for. Enjoy the opportunities that you have everyday to live in the moment. Everyday day and every moment is a true blessing to be thankful for. Thanks for reading, I hope this encourages you. 

What’s something that you are grateful for? How has gratitude changed your life? Comment below, I would love to hear your story.

: Gratitude Changes Everything!

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