Spring Break Blues and Gratitude

surviving spring break with gratitude
Me right before drifting into the deepest sleep ever.

This picture is my face after only three hours of sleep in the last 36+ hours, a hospital visit, cleaning up lots of vomit, and tending to a sick and very cranky preteen.

A thought ran across my mind that this week did not turn out the way it was supposed to.

– My son’s Spring Break plans were canceled last minute. He was supposed to spend a few days in Houston with his  aunt, but unforeseen circumstances prevented that.

– Consequently, the extra work I’d piled onto my schedule (some of which could not be rescheduled) in anticipation of having extra time on my hands prevented me from being able to do anything fun with him.

– Of course, he was major disappointed about not spending Spring Break with his aunt, whom he hasn’t seen in quite some time. To a 12-year-old, it didn’t matter that none of this was my fault or his aunt’s.

– Additionally, a fun field trip I had planned for him and postponed in lieu of the Houston trip could not be rescheduled for this week, which added insult to injury for him. (By the way, I’ll chronicle the field trip next week, so be on the  lookout for that!)

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Looking at this week like. . .

These were minor things, little speed bumps in our week that slowed us down but didn’t stop us. I’d been in a space of deep gratefulness all week for everything and nothing at once.

BUT THEN. . . .

Thursday night after dinner, we were hanging out in our living room watching one of those pointless YouTube shows that kids watch, where other kids are pranking each other or making slime, when my son started complaining that his stomach was hurting. I gave him water. I thought he’d just eaten too much. It got worse, and about 11 p.m. when he began crying in agony, I knew we’d better get to a hospital. We arrived around 11:30 p.m. and didn’t leave until 5:30ish. Turns out my kid needs more fiber in his diet. The doctor ordered an enema. Haha! He was not expecting that! One day this will be sooo embarrassing for him to read! LOL! Anyway, when we arrived home, I immediately shed all my clothes, threw them in the washer, and had him do the same, because hospitals. Ew! So after showering and washing my hair (a feat in itself), I slept from approximately 7 a.m – 10 a.m. when the kid woke me up because he was feeling queasy. Then the vomiting started. And there was a store trip in between cleaning vomit (fun, right?) and just comforting him and making sure he was ok. And mopping with bleach and washing vomit-y clothes and bath mats. And of course, making sure I got  aaaalllll the splash off the doors and door frames. Listen.

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Motherhood- 10, Me- 0

Keep in mind, except for those three hours, I’d been awake since 7 a.m. on Thursday. It was now Friday noon. The last thing I had planned for him, a lock-in hosted by the student ministry of Concord Church, was now looking like it also wouldn’t happen because of how sick he was.

So all of these things flashed through my head in a matter of seconds. I dwelled on them all of ninety seconds and let them go. Corrected and banished them. NO. YESTERDAY didn’t turn out how I thought it would, and that’s okay. It happens. I reminded myself that my son was able to learn some valuable lessons this week. He worked with me and was able to work off a small debt ($10) he owed me that will not have to come out of his allowance. He spent two days at a friend’s  he hadn’t visited in awhile. We were able to go to the movies, and he graduated to another level of independence. I allowed him to go and watch a different movie with his friend while us mothers were in a theater right down the hall. We ate out, and I taught him about tipping. He was able to witness the power of prayer Thursday night, as I prayed with him in the car and his stomach pains had subsided by the time we reached the hospital. And as it turned out, he was well enough to attend the student lock-in! 

Not only did this week turn out just fine, but there have been lots of exciting things happening that I’ve been working toward which I will share with you all as they unfold. 

As I contemplate how easy it was to almost get caught up in a complaining spirit, I realize how important it is to consistently practice gratitude. I was able to come back from those thoughts so quickly because my son and I end every day in gratitude. In our bedtime prayers, before we ask for anything- forgiveness, protection, healing, etc. -we give thanks for everything we can think of. The more we give thanks, the more things we find we have to be grateful for. If you’re reading this, I encourage you to make gratitude a daily practice for yourself and your family. You will live life so much deeper and so much richer. 

Oh, by the way. . . . Today, I slept my butt off!

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If this touched you in any way, leave me thoughts your below. Love you!