…or “Thankful Things Friday.” Because we all know all blog posts need a catchy title that coincides with the day-of-the-week.
Here’s the deal: my sense of holiday spirit and my general attitude toward life has been in the pits the past few weeks. Save for buying presents for my peeps and putting up the tree, I’ve mainly been avoiding the fact that my favorite season is currently being drowned in sickness.
The cookies I would be baking, the parties I would be attending, the jingle bell dashes I would be running…all of those ordinarily joyful Christmas things haven’t happened. Actually, they haven’t even been considered.
It’s sucked, no doubt. I still have yet to have one Christmas cookie, and I’m not even sure I’ll be able to have one this year. I heard “Where Are You Christmas?” on the radio the other day and nearly started ugly-sobbing on the spot. But, the nice thing about annually occurring holidays is that they’ll be here again. Presuming all is well and good next year, I will undoubtedly celebrate to the max — making up for all the Grinching I’ve done this year.
But, until that time comes, I’ve realized that despite the fact that most of my merry holiday expectations haven’t been met, there are still things I’m thankful for—with or without my health.
So, instead of hate-writing everything I’m bitter about right now, I thought it might do my toxic mind a little good to recap those things for which I am glad about:
1) I’m thankful I no longer have to take finals.
Can I get an amen? Seriously — I forgot just how ridiculously stressful all those semester-end tests made the Christmas season. After reading some Facebook statuses from friends still in school, I was thrilled that I no longer needed to worry about all-night study sessions or last-minute paper writing. Sure, I’d like to go back to school someday, but for right now — I’m relishing just how lovely all my homework-free evenings have been.
2) I’m thankful I’m done with Christmas shopping.
As mentioned previously, all my shopping is actually something I have accomplished despite my otherwise sluggish existence. I did have a slight advantage in this regard; I try to start shopping early, mainly to make the bank-account blow a little more spread out. So, I was mostly done before I got sick. Otherwise, Amazon is my bff. You can get EVERYTHING on there, people. I still don’t understand why some actively choose to go to malls when you can comfortably take your time at your computer screen instead and achieve nearly the exact same outcome? Whatever.
I’m happy I’m done, and I really love giving gifts, so it will be fun to do some giving.
3) I’m thankful for Jasper.
My little kitten has been a shining little ball of light during this dark spell. Sure, I have to be very conscious of him not pouncing on my stomach, and the smell of his food makes me even more nauseated, but otherwise — he brings a smile to my face. His energy and innocent curiosity are infectious, and it’s hard to remain too sullen when there’s a purring kitten vying for your attention. I also think he kind of knows I’m sick, because he’s paid particular attention to laying down with me and near my head.
4) I’m thankful I’ll be escaping Seattle on Saturday.
This weekend, BF and I will be jetting off to the motherland, Colorado, for a cold-climate Christmas. While I’m not looking forward to the flight itself, I have a feeling I will be incredibly relieved to be at home. I might not be able to do much of anything, but at the very least, I’ll have a different couch to watch my muscles atrophy into. Okay, in all seriousness, I know that being around my family will brighten my spirits no matter the circumstances. Brightening is really what I’m in need of right now, so I’m thankful for the vacation time that allows for this much-needed trip.
After CO, we’re allegedly road-tripping to Pasadena, CA for a warm-climate New Year. I say allegedly, because my ability to road-trip is questionable at the moment, but you never know how I’ll feel in a week. Either way, I’ll be there with even more of my family and I can’t wait. We have tickets to the Rose Parade, and I’m commanding my body to be up for it.
This trip is coming at the perfect time, and I’m thankful for the people waiting on the other end for me.
5) I’m thankful for a boyfriend who doesn’t care that his girlfriend is going to the bathroom after every other bite.
That was supposed to be a little funny. But, I am indeed so thankful for my nurse, Mr. BF, who has tended to my every need over the past three weeks. Not only that, but he’s been keeping our home live-able, which is vital for my mental state to remain in tact. He is also willing to hear about all my less-than-beautiful symptoms and ailments, and if that doesn’t indicate a keeper…I don’t know what does.
Unfortunately, I haven’t felt like a good girlfriend in a long time, and BF has not only tolerated my belly-aching (both literal and figurative) but he’s acted like a teammate along the way. I couldn’t really ask for more.
6) I’m thankful for grilled cheese sandwiches…
…and mac and cheese. I can’t stomach a lot of things, but bread and cheese are true saving graces right now. I’m starting to get a little disgusted with just how much of these food groups I’ve been consuming every day, but…desperate times man. My doctor instructed me to eat anything and everything that sounds appetizing, so I’m going for it. My weight isn’t exactly a concern nowadays either, so it’s actually probably a good thing I include the extra Beecher’s when I can.
On that note, I am a little horrified of just how much muscle I think I’ve already lost. Ordinarily, when I’m not running, I’m at least doing enough substitutes that my fitness stays in tact. Not this time, folks. It’s looking like I’ll be starting from square one whenever I’m back in the saddle, and while that scares the daylights out of me…it leads me to my last thankful thing:
7) I’m thankful for hope.
Hope in getting healthy. Hope in getting to Boston. Hope in getting my feet back under me. The nice thing about getting the carpet swept out from under you is that there’s really no where to go but up. I am a chronically hopeful person, and while this situation has certainly rocked my world, it has only re-established my belief that hope is sometimes the best medicine. I intend to celebrate each small victory I can, and while the process is going to be slow, I know I won’t be taking any of the small steps for granted.
This morning, for instance, I was able to put on makeup without getting too tired and having to sit down. It sounds so silly to consider this a feat, but in comparison to how I’ve been feeling otherwise, this was a big win for me.
On that note, here’s a small update: I am feeling a little better. I’m reluctant to say so, since there’s been some good days and bad days, but generally—since I received my first treatment injection last week—my worst symptoms seem to have lightened up.
So while I’m not ready to go making tons of plans or make a training schedule, I’m trying to keep positive thoughts flowing. Because, after all, sometimes optimism can cure even the Grinchiest of birds.
No matter your current health, running, job, financial status, etc., I encourage everyone to think about the good that still exists. I can promise, more than likely, there’s more than you realize.
Thank you everyone for your kind notes, texts, and emails. I truly appreciate your words, and it makes me even more thankful for this supportive community.