Allen Chalmers aptly stated, 'The grand essentials of happiness are: something to do, something to love, and something to hope for.' Doesn't seem lately that I have had any of that with my pain issues does it? Honestly, I have. While I may not move quickly, have a full time job out of the home right now, I always have something to do. The pure blessing of which I just realized is I can take my time getting it done and I don't have to be rushed.
What does that look like? It looks like getting up and wrapping myself in my warm soft red robe hubby got me for Christmas and putting on the water to boil for coffee while reading my bible each morning before waking the children up for school. It means if I am in pain that is okay to ask someone to help me make the bed because my arms have no strength. It means NOT coming home from working and rushing around to get things done so I can fall into bed exhausted!
Something to love? Wow! I have lots of someones to love and that love me...my God, my husband, my children, my grandchildren, my friends, church members, students and what to love? Living in Washington was the culmination of over 25 years of dreams and tears to come back to live, what is not to love? Oh sure, there is the rain and you either love it, hate it or deal with it...where I live, there is not nearly enough snow for me, but when it comes, I am happy. My grandmothers sewing machine, my quilting, a great cheesecake, a foot massage, a relaxing bath at a friends house (our tub isn't big enough to qualify as relaxing). Yes, plenty of somethings to love.
Something to hope for! That is the purpose of this message. Since moving here in 2007, I have spent my time trying to find work. Well, in the beginning I spent my time taking my grandchildren to the beach every day I possibly could and spending an entire summer not having to work for the first time in 35 years. Then, I was had a great year working for Americorps and now substitute teaching.
I have submitted over 200 applications, spent timeless hours interviewing, getting ready for interviews, knowing the company and finding the right questions to ask so I can know more about their corporate culture. I have spent hundreds of dollars in gas, travel expenses, hair cuts and other job related costs. I have traveled. Boy have I traveled! From Aberdeen to Olympia, Centralia, Westport, McCleary, Ocean Shores, Bremerton, Shelton and each time, I have returned hopeful only to have those hopes shattered!
Then today as I was applying for a local position it dawned on me. Why am I trying to get away? God sent my family to Aberdeen for a reason and a purpose, so why am I allowing others to discourage me and take away my hopes? I am staying and being happy and hoping for good things in my own front yard!
My granddaughter told me the other day she would pray for me to get a job, unless I was not going to be home at night and then she would pray for me to not get a job. As much as I don't like to face reality on my illnesses, I have Fibromyalgia and I had two recent back surgeries. I live with and probably always will live with and in chronic pain. Some days is worse like the past week or so without any medications and some are bearable when I can take my medication.
Knowing this, I should never give up hope. I can feel bad I didn't get the job I applied for or I can be proud that I beat out 190 people to place 10th. I can be upset that I will probably never see a job with that company since the one I applied for was the first opening in 15 years or I can realize I wasn't meant to be driving an hour in each direction to go to work. I can accept the fact that I have chronic pain syndrome and do the best I can to cope with it, or I can hide away in bed for the rest of my life........NOT GOING TO HAPPEN PEOPLE! Instead, I have hope that someday I can help someone else walk this path and make their life better.
If we don't have hope, all we see when we look out our windows are gray skies and not the beauty that surrounds us! God brought me to this area and yes, He may want me to move on someday but right now, I think I will grab my robe and a cup of hot tea and go sit out in the rain in my own front yard and thank Him for all I do have!
And never forget what Jimmy Buffett said about happiness, 'Some people never find it, some only pretend, but I just want to live happily ever after every now and then,' honestly, don't we all when we think about it live happily ever after every now and then?