Overcoming the Monday morning blues

Snow fell again last night. It's cold outside. I have two sick children and it's Monday morning. I sit, struggling internally to embrace the day and find joy in the midst of hard work. I know it's a choice. I can dwell on all the things that I don't like about today or I can start to count the blessings, start to flex that muscle again which seems to atrophy so easily. I begin, struggling to form the words, to make the emotional shift into thanksgiving. I know it's not an empty ritual, this really is life-giving and hope producing, but the process can be hard.
Lord, thank you for the soft warm blanket covering my toes on this cold winter morning. 
I feel my heart start to thaw a little. 
Thank you that my children are tucked up in warm beds and they have medicine to help them get well. Thank you for the bird finding his way to his food source; I'm glad there is still food in the feeder. Thank you that we have food in the refrigerator and I don't have to go to the grocery store today. 
I still feel like I am priming the pump. I'm not overflowing with joy but my perspective has changed and I believe this choice to give thanks, even without much feeling behind it, will bear fruit. I keep going:
Thank you for the way the birds alight on the snow laden branches making the branches move and  dance in the morning light. Thank you for the sound of my husband's morning - of him pouring the boiling water in to the cup and stirring in the sugar as the tea steeps into the water. I love that man. Thank you for the crazy reminders of my children - the debris strewn all over the floor. They are messy and I love them! Thank you that you have given us the gift of laughter - I love that tickle spot on my boys, under their arms, and how they squeal and laugh when I get my tickle finger on them. Thank you that I have no deadlines to meet today, just time to spend with my boys. 
I'm smiling as I write. I picture the boys impish smiles and it fills me with delight. I remind myself of what I have and that I live surrounded by so much blessing. This counting is life-changing, mood-transforming and this muscle of mine, so weak, needs to be flexed daily, hourly, even minute by minute. It's that reminder to see the beauty everywhere - it's all around me, I just need eyes to see it.


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