I went to bed still feeling down over the blood work, but I hoped a good night's sleep would leave me feeling better in the morning. (I can't begin to tell you how many times I heard that from my mother: "you'll feel better in the morning" or "you'll feel better after you eat," etc.) Somehow when I woke up what was on my mind was a memory from last year's 4th of July picnic.
Steve's aunt and uncle host a huge picnic/cookout that day, inviting family and friends. His aunt and uncle have a niece, on the other side of their family (so no real relation to us) that drives me a little bonkers. A few years ago her daughter from her first marriage, who was about 7 or 8, latched onto us the whole day, to the point of getting upset about not getting to see us again until the next year. She almost wanted to come home with us. (Her mother had recently remarried and seemed to be putting most of her energy into her new relationship, certainly not to the point of neglect but enough to be hard on her little girl.) Last year this woman was pregnant with twins and bitching extensively about having to buy a minivan, as well as the cost of minivans ("Can you believe they want $40,000 for a minivan?" with minivan, of course being sneered). What, your limit is 1 child per husband? (No, I didn't say it, but I thought it - and still think it.) Needless to say, that memory wasn't quite how I wanted to start my day.
It did get me started thinking, though. I don't have any problems with people who have children of any number when they don't take for granted what they have. If you are blessed with 10 children, and though they sometimes drive you bonkers and frustrate you to no end, you know that they are a blessing, it bothers me not at all.
It got me thinking about consciously pairing the ways in which we are blessed with what we do to give back. One example is having plenty of food and giving to the food bank. I was fortunate enough to get a bread machine from Freecycle, and I will use it to make bread for our parish's meager meals program. We are blessed with a strong marriage, and we're making a conscious decision to invite our step-great niece and nephew and our SIL's sister's daughter to family events that we host, so that we can serve as an example of what a good relationship should be like. (I'll be writing more about that soonish.) In what ways are you blessed? How could you couple that blessing to giving back?