a family looks happily at each other with open hearts

A Grateful Heart

How often do we hear that tomorrow is not promised? We know this to be true and yet we take life for granted. It is human nature. We know that we are finite beings, yet we do not think about mortality. We sometimes fail to recognize how fleeting and fragile life is. We go on with our daily lives often forgetting to appreciate the gift of life itself. I value my life immensely, even if the hurriedness of life consumes me at times.

Appreciating life and facing mortality

Living with illness makes you appreciate life in ways most people don’t comprehend. Many will not “get it” until or unless they “get it.” Illness obliges one to bask in the sunshine because rainy days are certain to come. Life often changes in moments, which is an eye-opening reality.

Facing mortality is both burdensome and liberating. It is burdensome because no one likes to think of the reality of death and all that must occur in preparation for it. It is liberating because when looking at the true meaning of existence, many things that would otherwise consume our time and occupy our minds become irrelevant. We choose who and what to expend our energy on.

There is beauty all around

No matter the obstacles encountered, life reminds us that there is beauty all around. The love of family and friends, the awe of nature, and/or something that brings great joy is priceless. Holding onto joy allows us to move through life’s trials and tribulations. Taking a moment to reflect on the gift of life empowers us. We realize that we are stronger than we think and we will persist. Reflecting on the joy in our lives allows us to exist in the present moment. We release the need to worry about occurrences we cannot control. We eliminate negativity from our lives. Growth and spiritual healing occur internally.

Nothing to pour from an empty cup

As we enter this year of the new decade, let us employ gratitude. Live what we profess. Appreciate goodness. If it is our desire to practice self-care, make the necessary adjustments to do so. There is nothing to pour from an empty cup. If we want to remain drama free, don’t indulge in it. If the goal is to practice empathy, refrain from judgment and gossip.

Be confident in knowing that grace has sustained you. There are no guarantees in our earthly existence. This is an undisputed fact. We are privileged to experience life in its entirety. That alone is something to be grateful for. Life is not and will never be easy, yet we are strengthened in the struggle.

I will stand and persevere

As a person who lives with heart disease, I recognize that its maintenance requires physical, mental, and spiritual adherence. Employing gratitude assists me in this endeavor. My ultimate goal is to cleanse my heart and live intentionally in the moment. Heart disease is my lifelong companion, yet grace and mercy will see me through. Come what may, I am here. I will stand and persevere because healing and gratefulness begin within. May you revel in the goodness of your life and may gratitude reside in the intricate parts of your being.

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