Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Days Like Today...

Today was my husband's birthday and it brought up a lot of emotions for me.  As I wrote in his birthday card, I wrote things that I would normally write, such as, "I'm so happy to grow old with you!" and things like that.  Now more than ever I am faced with the fact that I might not be here next year or even next month, so it really hit me today.  

I want to be here next year and next month, just to be clear.  I don't want to have my chronic illnesses and heart problems win.  I want to LIVE.  Even if my "living" is like it is now (which I could consider sub-par living but I'm too grateful to be alive to really think that.)

I don't have the energy or health (let alone the means!) to do a whole bunch of elaborate celebrating these days, so I chose to do something meaningful for my husband instead.  I decided that I could write on little sticky notes and place them all around the house in places that my husband looks each day.  On these sticky notes I wrote reasons why I'm glad he was born (one thing for each year of his life).  It really meant a lot to him as he discovered the little notes and remembered how much I love him.  I gave him some gifts later in the day of course, but when I look at things from the perspective of where my life and health is at, I think him being reminded of my love for him is the most important gift I could have given him!

I have all these memories come flooding back on days like today of good times with family, friends, and other loved ones and it can really tug at my heart.  It reminds me what is truly important in life.  When I look at how things are now: estranged from family, friends, and all (mostly) because of my health, it's really sad.  I'm not estranged from people completely because of my health problems, but the health problems do cause me to not have the ability to handle all the drama and other issues going on with people and their various situations.

On days like today I remember what it's like to have good memories be made and how great that can be.  I also know and remember what it's like to have the chance for those types of experiences be taken from you (through no fault of your own) and how painful that can be.  

On days like today...I am grateful for the family members that I DO have in my life and for the good friends I do have contact with, even if more of them are in cyber space than anywhere else!  

On days like today, I am grateful to still be HERE.  Alive, breathing, and my heart beating.  Even if my heart and body is struggling, I am still here. 

xoxo ~ Ellie

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Becoming a Better Spouse

As I sit here on my couch, pondering life and all it's ups and downs, I think a lot about my marriage.  As my health problems have increased and my abilities wane, I have to stop and really remember what marriage and life is all about.  If I didn't I would get really depressed!  When you're at a place in life where you aren't sure how long you're still going to be around it really puts things in perspective.

What if today was your last day here on earth?  Or your last month or year?  I found this picture that sums up my thoughts.

I think the message of this quote can apply to pretty much EVERY relationship in our lives, but especially with our spouses.  While realistically we all need a little constructive criticism and help from each other in our lives, we need to know where that fine line is.  Are we angry with the imperfections of our spouse or are we "really" trying to help?  Only you can know the answer but if you can't answer that, chances are you should stop the behavior for the sake of your marriage.  The trick here for me is to follow this advice myself!

I hope all who read this will take a moment today to thank their spouse for all they do.  At least for today, don't worry about all that they don't do or what they do imperfectly.  Now is the time to let them know how much  you care and how much you love and appreciate them.  If you don't take the opportunity, you don't know when it could be too late.

xoxo ~ Ellie

Thursday, February 7, 2013

CIICO - About Us Chronically Ill Cat Lovers...

What is "CIICO" you ask?  It's what me and millions of others are currently suffering from here on the internet - Chronic Illness Induced Cat Obsession.  Is it a serious illness?  Well...define "serious".  LOL 

I've noticed there are so many of us "spoonies" or those suffering some type of chronic illness that are completely obsessed with our cute fuzzy critters!  So much so that I've decided to call it CIICO.  (Hey, at least I think its funny.  Maybe that's just my tired brain for ya.)  

In my official opinion, there are two stages of CIICO:

  • Stage I - Enjoying pictures of other people's cute kitties.
  • Stage II - Posting endless amounts of pictures of your own furry kitty kid.

So far I am still just in Stage I but on the edge of entering Stage II.  Let us all hope that I don't enter into Stage II too soon or beware - it will never end!  My kitty is SOOO cute!  That's what all pet parents say but it's for sure true about my furry kitty girl.  

So, let us all continue to share the furry joy and cuteness that is our kitties and other animals!  This so we can spread cheer from sofa to sofa across the nation (and prevent me from feeling the need of clogging cyber space with all those endless pictures of my cat I have on my cell phone)!

xoxo ~Ellie

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Just Begin - Musings of a "New" Writer

I've always wanted to write a book.  Some of my earliest memories are of myself typing away on my parents' old "dinosaur" computer writing short stories.  I loved using the typewriter too.  *sigh*  Those were the days!  Have I mentioned I love the sound of typing?  That may be beside the point, but I love the sound of typing (and clapping, but that's another thing).  

Anyway back to my point!  I've always wanted to write a book - a novel, a picture book, pretty much any type of book!  The idea of creating something amazing just from words alone intimidates me, however.  I worry that my characters and plot won't be interesting, I worry that I won't be able to have enough dialog and ideas to make it any normal length, the list  of worries could go on and on!

With the deterioration of my health especially these last few years, more than ever I have wanted to write.  The one downfall:  writing takes energy both in the mind and body.  On the flip side, creating something can invigorate and (to a degree) energize even someone with serious health issues like me.  

This brings me to where I am today: ready to write!  I don't care if it isn't perfect, if it's boring, if no one but me ever reads it once it's completed.  I just want to start and finish something and learn new skills along the way.  I hope you'll join in with me on my writing journey!  I welcome any tips or pointers along the way that may help me complete my goal and find success!  

Here I go!

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Self Acceptance

Recently I came across an AMAZING blog post that has changed how I view my life called Drops of Awesome.  I don't know the person who wrote it, but I got to thinking about the great message they shared and how it has helped me and so many others out there in cyber land!  The following post from me contains my own thoughts about self acceptance, but I need to give credit to the author of the Drops of Awesome post because without reading that I may not have written this. 

Self Acceptance

I want you to look in the mirror today. Really look. This is the body your Heavenly Father gave you. It isn't perfect, and maybe you don't like different parts for various reasons, but it's the body that you have been given. No person or body is perfect, despite what we see in the media, or what we think when we look at other people. More than likely you're doing your best to take care of your body. Your best is NOT going to look like someone else's best. EVER. And that's okay! Is there something you could change or do better? Of course there is, that's life. But there is no need to beat yourself up about not being perfect or even close to it.

Not all of us were built to run marathons or climb mountains. Maybe you have health problems (like me) and can’t hardly get out of bed, or go get your mail, let alone taking a shower or cooking most days! There is a reason that our Heavenly Father has counseled us to not run faster or labor more than we have strength. Everyone is in a different place in their lives, with different abilities and health levels.

If our bodies were intended to remain perfect throughout life, then skin issues, stretch marks, cellulite and wrinkles and other health problems wouldn't exist! We would all have similar experiences because none of us would be very different from each other, and so we wouldn't learn some of life's greatest lessons: self acceptance, appreciation, tolerance, and gratitude. It is important for us all to develop an attitude of gratitude for the blessings of having a body and a life to live, even if with your current body and circumstances don’t allow you to do in life the same things others can do.  

In conclusion, what I want to be taken to heart from this is that when you do your best, it is YOUR best.  Not someone else's best, so stop comparing yourself to others!  You aren't doing yourself any favors, even if you compare yourself to others under the guise of self improvement.  A lot of us would be much happier if we stopped measuring ourselves with someone else's ruler and just accepted ourselves as we are.