So the summer is over and the truth is it was not a great one for me. Instead of frolicking in the pool and celebrating the weddings, showers, and graduation parties that were on my calendar, I went to doctor appointments and googled my way across the WWW trying to find an answer for the extreme fatigue, weight loss, and nausea I was experiencing. I’ve been here before (although not with the exact same symptoms) but I’ve been very sick for a very long time with “invisible chronic illness” and I really hoped I was done learning the lessons I needed to learn in that particular life course curriculum. Of course life doesn’t care whether we’ve been there before or had enough, it just keeps happening, and when the going gets tough we all have to choose if we’re going to be proactive-one-foot-in-front-of-the-other warriors or head-in-the-sand whiners. I must confess to have been a bit of both this past summer.
My health has recently improved a bit since this mystery illness first began, and although the weight loss has slowed to a crawl compared to a couple months ago, I still can’t gain even though I’m taking in plenty of calories. I know some of you are probably thinking “I have a few pounds I could send your way”, trust me, that offer has been on the table from friends and family for months and if I had been able to take them all up on it fitness guru Richard Simmons would be at my front door with a crane ready to haul me off to weight loss boot camp!
Still, I truly believe that no matter what is happening in your life there is always an opportunity for gratefulness and grace so here is my list of summer “bests”.
1. Birthday parties for my two grandchildren. Brooklyn turned 3 in July and Ashton had his 1st birthday party in May. I am thankful for those little arms that wrapped themselves gently around my neck this summer, the sweetness of those hugs helped me feel whole again.
2. I won a free night in Toronto with an Instagram photo I did for a contest organized by Josh Johnson and sponsored by ALT Hotels. My pic is now part of a permanent art installation in the lobby of the ALT Toronto Pearson hotel and me and Mr. Bookbabie are hoping to take a road trip this fall to see it in person and use my gift certificate, thanks Josh and ALT Hotels!
3. My debut novel, The Wonder of Ordinary Magic, won a silver medal in the 2012 Readers Favorite Award Contest! The awards ceremony will be held in Miami this November during The Miami Book Fair International, the largest book fair in America. As a first time author it is a thrill to be honored by this group, thank you so much Readers Favorite.
4. Always, always on my gratitude list is my husband Doug. Without him by my side I would simply feel lost and adrift as I navigate life’s bumpy waters.
“If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” ~Meister Eckhart
Glad you are starting to feel better! Congratulations on the Silver Medal, the photo contest, and best of all your loved ones around you!
Thanks Fab, looking forward to getting back out and about again and seeing you at the next BNO dinner!
You truly have a special talent With words. We too had a touch with death these last months, and my bride of sixty three years has a 9″ scar down her beautiful belly to show for it. I told her she had to survive because one day I intent to die in her arms.
Congratulation on your recognition. We loved the book.
Peace and love,
Ed and MC
I’m glad Mary Catherine is ok Ed, I knew she was having some health troubles but didn’t know the extent of them. Thank you for being so kind and supportive, you two were always favorites of us Jolgren kids and I’m so glad FB allows us to keep in touch..hugs to you both…
I send you both my love.
Congrats on the book award Lilli, the photo prize, and I hope you get an answer about your health and get back in action (and back to writing!) soon.
Thank you Laura, it’s been a long, not so fun 6 months, but I’m looking forward to a better fall and winter!
I wish you wellness so you can enjoy the gifts life is giving you. Congratulations on your photo and book awards!
Thanks Barb, that’s a lovely way of putting it and exactly how I feel:)
Hi There, So sorry that you have had a rough summer health-wise —but your attitude toward life and its blessings is such an inspiration… Glad you do have so many blessings in your life –despite the pain. God Bless You, my Friend.
Thanks, I get the same good vibes from your blog too Betsy, we all have “stuff”!
I am sorry you have had such a difficult time with your “invisible chronic illness,” (I have one, too) but WOW, what wonderful other things that have been going on in your life! Congratulations on the photo and book awards, and what fun it will be to visit Toronto and Miami!
Thanks Lindy, then you know how it goes. Sometimes you feel pretty good and think you’re “normal” then bang the %#@!* hits the fan as they say and you’re back going to docs and wondering why your body has betrayed you (again!) We are going to Toronto if at all possible this month but not sure I will be up to Miami in November, probably just get my medal in the mail:(
Hope there will be some magic to take you out of the slump and back to your normal self. The trip to Toronto should e a great experience!
Thanks harvee, we can all use a little magic sometimes!
Congratulations on all of the wonderful events! That photo is wonderful and I already knew your book was great — I really liked it! Now you just have to get back to healthy. Being sick can just be so frustrating. I’m keeping good thoughts for you. Hugs!
Thank you Kc!
Thanks for stopping by my blog.
Unexplained illness is always very difficult to deal with. I know you’ve done your own research but perhaps you haven’t come across a book that you might be interested in reading. I only offer it because the author suffered years of unexplained weight loss and fatigue (not sure about the nausea).
Here is the book http://www.amazon.ca/Patient-Heal-Thyself-Remarkable-Groundbreaking/dp/1893910245
Thanks so much Joyful, I will definitely check out the book!
I’m glad you’re starting to feel better. It does seem like you have a lot to be thankful for even in the midst of a tough time.
Thanks Carol, it helps to at least try to focus on the good stuff on bad days, keeps me going….
Thank you for calling in and liking one of my posts. I am very taken with what I read here and will be following your progress through what I hope will be a better Autumn and Winter for you than the Summer has been.
I, too, gain great comfort from the little arms of Grandchildren and the bigger arms of Mr S. Congratulations on your award and on your positive focus for the lovely things you are planning. It’s what I do each day in my blog … 🙂