Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Happiness & Gratitude is a Choice

I was talking with a dear friend recently about unrealised dreams and how we respond to the storms in our lives.

For me, these unrealised dreams came in the form of a broken marriage. Since I was a little girl, I had dreamed of a long & happy marriage to a man who loved me unconditionally, “until death do us part”. However, after 14 years of marriage, during which I lost 2 babies to miscarriage, I also lost the father of my 4 (+2) children to adultery & abuse.

It would have been natural, to allow negativity to overtake my thoughts and steal my joy. However, I chose rise above my circumstances; to stand and praise Him anyway through these times of trauma & loss, and to be thankful for what I have rather than what I have lost.

My friend had a very similar story to me. We were discussing how we could have responded very differently than the way we did, and the affect that would have had on our own lives and the lives of our children.

It took time to heal my wounded heart... before I found peace, contentment, forgiveness and happiness in my "new" life as a single Mum to my four young children. God carried me through, just like in the well-known poem “Footprints”.

However, it would take 12 years of single parenting until I finally met the man I had dreamed of as a child (and surprisingly, he was a man I had known since I was 6 months old)!

The biggest lesson I have learned through all my life experiences is... Gratitude in all things!
It's a choice to be grateful. It's a choice to extend forgiveness to those who hurt you. It's a choice to find joy in even the toughest situations!

Just last week, I lost that dear friend... she died from complications after giving birth to her 7th child... she leaves behind 6 young children. To say I am sad is an understatement. I will miss her terribly.

Her loss is a reminder of how unpredictable life can be. We never know when our time is up; there is often no warning, no time to prepare. I believe it is important to never leave things unresolved. My aim is to make sure that the last thing I have said to my loved ones is "I love you".

**This post is dedicated to my dear friend Vicki Leanne Butler. Until we meet again, Vicki!**

Linking up with these memes:



Graham Edwards said...

I feel sympathy for anyone who has lost a parent or child or friend: especially so when it is unexpected. Like you I have a positive outlook but in one of my recent spells in hospital I was told that I could have been (not that I definitely was) within a few hours of death. I resolved to write a letter to my friends and family (or perhaps individual letters) who are scattered across the world letting them know how much they mean(t) to me.

The Furry Gnome said...

So sorry to hear about Vicki, but I agree with you. How we react is a choice.

Lisa Gordon said...

I am so very sorry for the loss of your friend, Liz.
This post is a beautiful tribute to her.
May your wonderful memories of her bring you comfort at such a difficult time.
Sending you hugs.

Brian King said...

Beautiful photos! I'm very sorry for the loss of your friend. My deepest condolences.

Helen said...

So sorry to read of the loss of your dear friend, but glad that you have been able to pay tribute to her and life through these wonderful images.

Jim said...

Beautiful sky.

Esha said...

So very sorry to hear of your loss! To lose a good friend is a terrible thing and I can only imagine how hard this must be for you, having gone through so many losses yourself! But, I do hope you find the strength and the positivity to move on and keep your chin up through it all. Lovely sky shots, by the way! Loved each one of them. <3

Stanley Hattman said...

I was so engrossed in your story, I kept scrolling down to read further and forgot to look at the images [which are quite lovely]. I am sorry that you have experienced such pain/adversity, and wish you all the best for the future...hugs...

Felicia said...

I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. beautiful skies.

Spare Parts and Pics said...

A powerful post. Gratitude in all things is a wonderful life lesson that few are able to achieve.

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