I saw an utterly inspiring post over at An Empowered Spirit, which I thought absolutely sums up the attitude we're trying to nurture by taking part in this hop. Please take a few moments to read it - it's really beautiful.
This week contained much for me, so I'll crack on.
1. Normal service IRL has been rather badly disrupted by a bout of ill health, closer examination of which led my concerned GP to send me for an emergency scan on Wednesday. It was clear. And while this frustratingly means I'm no closer to knowing what's wrong, I've been given a kindasorta helpful medication and can schedule further tests soon if things don't appear to improve. I am so massively thankful that I live in a country where healthcare is free and can be almost immediately responsive when there's a problem. It's a huge privilege, and one I take too lightly, too often.
2. I'm hugely thankful for the support of some wonderful friends, who talked me down from panics pre-scan, provided very patient listening ears and did their best to cheer me up while I was scared and in pain, and of my lovely family, particularly Niece, who in a moment of sweetness that transcended most sweet moments EVER, gave me her very precious toy monkey to look after me. I took him to the hospital with me. He helped.
3. I'm thankful for Husby, for looking after me while I've been unwell, and for letting me in on some things which were bothering him. We had a very heartfelt, bonding chat, which was well worth doing. We are right for each other, and I love that this keeps getting reconfirmed in hundreds of small ways each day.
4. I'm slightly stunned to be able to be thankful for this, but I've had some really positive feedback and proof this week that my writing has the ability to move people and do Real Things. It's hugely encouraging and I'm going to continue to write often and (hopefully) meaningfully. An exciting offshoot this week was the creation (with a friend) of the Facebook group, The Invisible Moms Club - a phrase in writings gone by which seems to have resonated. It aims to provide support, encouragement and community for any woman who's suffered the loss of a child, at any stage, and so far we are small but growing in number, and enjoying the chance to get to know one another.
5. I got tagged in a couple of games, the first of which came via my friend Heather at The Destiny Manifest. It's another linked-in Old School Blogging game, and though I feel I've 'tagged out' all my blogging friends at the moment, I'm prepared to run the gauntlet and show you 'What's On Your Fridge'.
2. From my best friend. It says "You'll always be my friend; you know too much!". I do, as well!
3. Gift from Sis "Sister, you were the one I always told on, now you're the friend I always lean on." TRUE DAT!
4. Picture I drew of me and Husby when we're Little Olds. It's my hope, my dream and my prayer that we'll get there one day.
5. A Christmas decoration we found in the street.
6. Palm Sunday crosses from (er) two years
7. Inspiration - "The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord shine his face upon you and be gracious to you. The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace." (Numbers 6: 24-26)
8. Grouchy polar bear magnet with the legend "I'm not a morning person". Husby bought it for me. I'm far more of a morning person than he is.
9. Tae-Kwon-Do magnet from the London 2012 Olympics, which was the event we went to see.
10. New York magnet from when Husby visited family
11. Belize hummingbird magnet, sent by my lovely friend Shanique
12. Magnet of the London Eye. We went once, just to have done it.
13. A memo pad, never used.
14. My prayer list. Sometimes it helps to remind me.
15. A card from Husby about 'The Cloud of Loveliness' - "Here's a little something for you to float on whenever you feel the need"
16. Magnetic Scrabble - (one of) Husby's Christmas presents from me
17. Message to you all
6. Next game, this time from April at Musings of a Childless Mama (again, not going to tag anyone - you're welcome) but an interesting one because it's a kind of 'behind the scenes' one again, bringing to light things I might not otherwise have seen fit to share.
A bustling, multi-cultural port town in the Central South Coast of England.
2. What hobby would you love to pick up?
I'd next like to learn to speak Polish. It's a beautiful language to listen to, and would be helpful in my new job, as the city has a very large Polish population.
3. Tell us something we may not know about you...
I'm right-footed, right-handed and left-eyed. Which is apparently weird. Which fits.
4. Why did you start blogging?
Great timing, actually, because in 10 days time, I will have been doing this for one year! If I'm completely honest, I began partly to exercise my writing ability, and otherwise for completely narcissistic reasons. Since then, with two miscarriages and an infertility diagnosis under our belts, I've begun to soapbox a little bit, which has given something of a direction. I also think I've managed to loosen up and have a lot more fun with it. Pushed a few boundaries, that kind of thing.
5. Which blog are you in love with that you only found out about recently?
And by 'recently' you mean...? Okay, it's not that recent of a find, but it's one which, each time I go back to, I find enriching, nourishing, challenging and always, always an inspiring read - it's 'Left Brain Buddha'
6. When you struggle in life, what keeps you going?
Faith, Family, Friends. In that order (sometimes).
7. I'm privileged (and very thankful) for the honour the Blogosphere bestows, in being able to vicariously experience such tender and precious things as the rawness and beauty in a stillborn child, a mother's forever-love, trying to get back to oneself when the self is overwhelmed, and how an experience of childhood bullying can irrevocably alter the present
8. I'm LOVING the connectivity that Twitter affords, and from having been a rather reluctant Twit at the start, I'm now jumping in with both feet and frolicking and tweeting it up. It's so fun, so responsive, and only gets me in BIGTROUBLE every so often (I think I *just* about avoided a death sentence from Terrye the other day after Mike and I kindasorta "blew up her phone" with excessive tagging at an inconvenient time - sorry Terrye, I still owe ya big) but mostly, when used for good, not nefarious reasons, it's superfun and well, I love it and can't wait to get a smartphone so I can be a Twit on the go (as if I need help in that department...)
9. I'm HUGELY EXCITEDLY THANKFUL for Deb, of UrbanMooCow, who made a comment which inspired a post about the darker side of blogging, and she's kindly agreed to have it as a guest post over at hers on Thursday. That's the 22nd. Put it in your diaries. You won't want to miss it (unless you're easily offended, in which case steer well clear!) and not just because I wrote it and she said lovely things about it, but because while you're there, you can look around the rest of her awesome blog.
10. I'm very thankful and kinda excited that I'm going on holiday tomorrow for a week. A blissful, family-oriented week away near this beach:
...and very intermittent chance of internet access, so while I'll be enjoying the relax (and who knows, maybe an early night or two?) I will miss you all very much, and apologise in advance that I'm unlikely to be able to respond to any comments here, or leave you comments chez toi until later this week (there's bound to be *somewhere* with WiFi and a cup of tea!)
However, I have every confidence that in my absence, my lovely co-hosts will make it round to you all, and our lovely community of Thankfulness will abound. Enjoy sharing your Things of Thankful from this week.
A Fly on our (Chicken Coop) Wall, Considerings, Finding Ninee, I can say mama, I Want Backsies, Steps into Parenthood, Thankful Me, The Wakefield Doctrine