Silver Linings

Leprechauns aren’t the only lucky ones… we all are

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By Elizabeth Strada

As we head into March, it is impossible not to reflect on the fact that it has now been a year since the world shut down. Well, my world did anyway. My husband was told not to come into the office, my kids and I were introduced to the wonders of virtual learning (and learned that there is no amount of compensation that would be too much for our teachers), and social engagements became a thing of the past.

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What if tomorrow, you woke with only the things you were grateful for today?

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It was bizarre at first, moving into unsettling, and rapidly morphing into terrifying. “New normal” became the catch phase uttered in every zoom meeting and happy hour. As we adjusted, we went from scared to frustrated and back to scared. There was an unease in not knowingwhat fresh dissapointment would be introduced next – vacations that never happened, cancelled weddings and graduations, new babies that didn’t get to be loved on by their grandparents, employment positions that were eliminated as society’s needs changed and fiscal woes mounted. Worst of all, knowing that at any moment another friend,neighbor or loved one could be the next victim of this new virus.

Ok, hold up, don’t quit reading yet, come back. 

I swear I have a point other than just trying to make Sylvia Plath look like Mary Sunshine. It gets better from here. Ready? While this virus has taken so much from us, it has given us the opportunity to look for the silver linings.

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finding our feet

some blessings this crazy year

I got to know new neighbors (from a distance, don’t judge) that I would never have had the time to speak to previously. I was able to reconnect with my kids (sometimes more than they wanted) and really spend time WITH them, not just rush them from one activity to the next.

I started a new exercise routine because it really didn’t matter how ridiculously uncoordinated I looked trying to go from first position to second in barre from the privacy of my house (unrelated – I had zero clue just how many different free workouts were floating out there in the internet ether- it’s really amazing).

I learned how to make lots of new craft cocktails instead of relying on my old stand-by (and cheers to anyone who was able to make it through March of 2020 without upping their alcohol intake – you’re amazing!)

I feel as if how lucky we feel in life hinges a great deal on our ability to see the good through the bad(and there was a lot of bad in 2020).

Ten years ago, this month, my husband and I were moving to our first new home together. We had an almost 2-year-old and I was 9 weeks pregnant. After the movers picked up the last of the boxes and I was following them to the new house in my car, an 18-wheeler ran a red light and crashed into me.

My car was totaled, my driver’s side door wedged in the grill of the truck. I walked away with nothing except a few scratches from flying glass and our healthy baby was born 30 weeks later.

To this day, I cannot explain the physics of how that accident played out. I just know that when I start to feel overwhelmed and negative (which I can do more often than I care to admit, especially in the past year), I take it back to basics and think about how fortunate I am and count the gifts in my life.

The Lucky Ones...

I believe that the more difficult it is to see your blessings, the more important it is to look for them.

I read something once that said something along the lines of – what if tomorrow, you only woke up with the things you were grateful for today? I think that is such a great reminder not to take our many blessings for granted.

So tonight, take a few minutes, and make a list of 5 or 10 or 25 things that bring something positive to your life – whether it’s your partner, your kids (yes, they are loud and needy, but seriously, how boring would life without those little buggers???), your job, your health, a roof over your head, the lady that let you get in front of her so you could get through the line at the grocery store faster, whatever makes you feel like your day wasn’t as much of a hot mess as it could have been.

I think if we stop and really think about it, we can find at least one thing in our life that makes us realize how lucky we are.

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Sincerely,

Elizabeth

Suwanee, Georgia Newborn Photographer Colleen Hight taking picture of Dad holding newborn baby

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