things to be happy about


Many years ago I was given a gift of a book titled 10,000 Things To Be Happy About. I haven’t thought about that book for a long time, but for some reason today it came into my mind.  It was a pretty cool concept.  This girl had just kept notebooks for years of anything that made her feel good, from kids jumping rope to the color of her socks to eating pixy stix (remember those?) and thousands of other little everyday things.

I think the book came to my mind because of a song by Superchick called We Live.  The second verse goes like this:

There’s a man who waits for the tests to
See if the cancer had spread yet
And now he asks so why did I wait to live ’til it was time to die
If I could have the time back, how I’d live
Life is such a gift
So how does the story end?
Well, this is your story and it all depends
So don’t let it become true
Get out and do what we were meant to do

(see the song here)

I used to hear that song and not quite get it.  What did it mean, wait to live till it was time to die?  We live every day.  What else do we do?  But now it makes more sense to me.  I think about how many days I wasted doing nothing of any real meaning.  And I’m blessed.  I am reasonably sure that I will be cured and go on to live a normal lifespan.

But right now, when I am so aware of the fact that I have cancer, and I want to live my life for all it’s worth, ironically I am pretty much locked in a very small world of working part-time, coming home and resting till dinner, sometimes getting up and spending time with Sam, sometimes just going back to bed.  I might make it to church on Sunday, but not the last few weeks.  Praise God our church streams the service live on the internet, so I’m not totally missing out, but it’s not quite the same.

my kitchen (well, a corner of it)

So I was thinking about that song, and wondering what it is that i do about “living” when I am so constrained, and for some reason that book came to mind.  And I just laid for about half an hour or so and thought about things to be happy for.  Things like the fact that the sun rises right in my kitchen window every morning right when I’m getting up for work.  And the really good hand lotion my mom sent so I don’t itch anymore.  And cards from friends surprising me in the mail.  And the way my kitchen looks when the sun comes streaming in.
Things like having a laptop so I can type in bed and have a blog and facebook with friends – oh, and video chat with my grandkids!  And playing Words with Friends on my phone with my husband and my son and my stepson.  And getting a goodnight text from my daughter.

my beautiful daughter Courtney

Things like the smell of my favorite Yankee candle – lemon splash.  And the look of our fireplace on a bleak afternoon like today.  And Sam and my devotion time before bed.  And soft knit hats to keep my head warm.  And the fact that since chemo I only have to shave my legs about once a month!


Things like the fact that I have the absolute greatest husband, family and friends in the world.  And I’m blessed by an incredible job and coworkers.  Above all, I am loved unconditionally, accepted completely, forgiven totally and wanted forever by the Creator of the universe.  Now THAT is something to be happy about.  

I’m glad in God, far happier than you would ever guess… I’ve learned by now to be quite content whatever my circumstances. I’m just as happy with little as with much, with much as with little. I’ve found the recipe for being happy whether full or hungry, hands full or hands empty. Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.   Phillipians 10a, 11b-13

4 thoughts on “things to be happy about

  1. Jerri Thompson

    It is 4:30 am and I can’t get to sleep because of acid reflux, so I am catching up on emails and your blogs. I really related to this one because I have been feeling lousy for the last month, and today, as I was feeling sorry for myself, I heard God saying to give thanks in all circumstances. So I began to think of things to be thankful for, like feeling well enough to come to work and be somewhat productive (vs. focusing on not being as productive as I would like to be), having a wonderful job, being able to keep my hair appointment, etc. That little change in perspective made a HUGE difference. So your blog kind of kept that whole idea going. Thanks!

    • I’m so glad to hear it! It does help so much, doesn’t it? I know when I start looking at all the negatives (and it can be so easy to do) I feel worse physically, too. The more I dwell, the worse I feel, but when I start to be thankful, I do feel better, even if only a little. A cheerful heart is good medicine.

  2. grace haas

    Today would have been my Mom’s birthday, and in thinking about her I decided it would be a good day to make a batch of “Grandma’s buns”, using the bowl in which she always made her dough. Sometimes they turn out almost like hers, but just doing it makes me feel closer to her and brings back memories of the beautiful person she was. God blessed her 12 children and their spouses, children, and grandchildren with a true prayer warrior. Oh, to be like her.

    • Grandma and Grandpa are the spiritual heritage that gives our family the foundation of faith we have. I am so thankful for them and for what they passed down to you. I miss her – I miss both of them.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s