At the start of 2016, inspired by a friend, I started a daily gratitude challenge – posting one thing that I was thankful for each day on Instagram. I enjoyed it so much that when I reached the end of that year, I carried on and have kept going ever since. Finding one little thing to be thankful for each day has now become part of my daily routine and I’ve loved seeing friends joining in along the way too.
Finding little things to be grateful for isn’t always easy, especially when living through scary and uncertain times. I have found though that trying to find something, however small and trivial, to be grateful for has helped me through some of the hardest days of my life.
My eldest daughter Jessica, who died in April 2018, was an inspiration to me throughout her short life. She had so much strength and such a wonderful zest for life. Her godmother described her once as a “joy carrier” and it was the perfect description for her. She was a little ray of sunshine, full of smiles and gave joy to all who knew her. I am, and will always be, grateful to be her mummy. She taught me to enjoy the little moments and to make the most of everyday because tomorrow is never promised. And even though having to live life without Jessica is by far the hardest thing I have ever had to do, I will continue to look for those little things to be thankful for, and keep going with this challenge in honour of my beautiful brave girl.
Here are my grateful moments from the past week:
Day 124 – I am grateful for the love and support that my husband gives. It is nine years today since the day we first found out about Jessica’s heart condition. I am grateful that my husband has been by my side throughout this journey, sharing all the wonderful moments of life with Jessica, being there through the fear of each surgery and the devastation of losing Jessica. He has walked each step of this journey beside me; shared the joys; held me close through countless tears and although he drives me crazy at times, I’m not sure I could have got through it all without him. Today has been a tough one but having him by my side has helped make it a little more bearable.
Day 125 – I am grateful for fun making balloon rockets.
Day 126 – I am grateful for the learning material and activity sheets that Sophie’s school have been providing. We’ve found the work that the school have put online each week manageable so far and Sophie has enjoyed some of the extra activity sheets especially this week’s VE Day themed activity sheets.
Day 127 – I am grateful for adorable co-ordinating outfits.
Day 128 – I am grateful that the bunting has been made and is now hung all around the “party tent” ready for us to have a little VE Day party tomorrow.
Day 129 – I am grateful for a 1940s-themed garden party to mark the 75th anniversary of VE Day and grateful that even though life might be restricted right now, we have not had to live through the horrors of war. Sadly there are still many people across the world who are not so fortunate. To those who gave so much, we thank you, but we also think of those who still live with fear due to conflict.
Day 130 – I am grateful for a birthday filled with love and laughter. Sophie and Thomas enjoyed having a “pool party” and I enjoyed the giggles. We’ve had a lot of fun moments and a few sad ones too. Jessica is always very much missed particularly on days like today, and it has been strange not to be able to see my twinny on our birthday. But it’s been a nice one on the whole. Thank you to everyone who has wished me a happy birthday today.