12 January 2021


Life is full of ups and downs. Last year seemed sometimes to have more downs than ups. This year may have caused some to wonder if the downs will ever stop.

I've had my fair share of downs, and then some. Finding out long, long ago in what feels like a different world I couldn't give birth, losing my sister and then my brother, both of my adopted kids permanently running away just months apart -- all were such dark days. I wasn't sure I'd survive each time trauma hit.

It hasn't been easy. There have been many days when I wondered if life was worth living. But each experience taught me something new and helped me build new strength. Each time I survived, it was worth it.

One of the darkest days of my life was back in August, when Lizard went into acute rehab. Every time I sit down to try to share the sequence of events, I decide it's better left in my journal and not on display for the world to see.

One of the spontaneous things I did last year to combat depression and desperation was sign up for a free 10-week Zoom emotional resilience class. One of the things I learned in that class is a lesson I learned many, many years ago, back when I first learned I could not have children. I literally saw no purpose in life back then if I could not be a mother. I went home alone to a dark trailer in the middle of the desert where I had no phone and no friends, pulled out my tablet-sized college rule journal (because this was ages before anyone had home computers other than hand-held calculators) and began making a list of things for which I was grateful.

1. My grandma.
2. Photography.
3. Poetry.
4. My sewing machine.
5. Etc., etc., etc...

I fell asleep on my writing pad at number 84. That list got me through a terrifying night. I've pulled "the list" out and added to it many times since and am currently at number 694, with no repetitions. Last year during my emotional resilience class, I was challenged to write something for which I was grateful in my journal each night. I remembered the list. I've added to that list every night since November 22.

Right after Christmas 2020, Lizard and I watched "The Hiding Place", the story of Corrie ten Boom. I'd read the book many years ago, and there have been times when I have studied Corrie's life. Sometimes the picture doesn't become truly clear until you watch it happen in front of your face. Perhaps 2020 had something to do with my new appreciation of her life. Can you imagine being thankful for lice?!?

The most important lesson I learned in 2020 is to be grateful. The hardships we have faced have taught us things we need to know. The difficulties we have overcome have made us stronger.

There have been dark days. I'm sure there will be many more. But there have been many bright days, too. Working through the difficulties takes effort. Sometimes the struggle seems endless.

Surviving is worth it. I promise.


  1. Blessings to you.....pondering....and timely.

  2. Such an inspiring share!

  3. The most important lesson I learned in 2020 is that it is incredibly easy to manipulate the masses. On a more positive note, I also learned that it's easy to let go of people who hurt you. Yes, that's mt positive note haha.

    You hang in there and thank you fir always stopping by.

    May 2021 be a year of enlightenment.



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