Wednesday, November 21, 2012


Each Thanksgiving, we have an activity where each member of the family writes on a slip of paper the things they are grateful for at that time.  Depending on the year, sometimes it's a one-time deal.  Other times we try to keep it up during the whole month of November.  Some years I'm creative and have the slips of paper cut into cutesy autumn shapes, while other years we rip off corners of paper and throw them into a shoebox. However formal we are or aren't though, reading through the slips always proves to be an entertaining experience, while we get a little glimpse into everyone's state of the mind at the time they wrote the slip.  We've read things like "I'm grateful for rolling down the hill," and "I'm grateful for being able to take a nap in homeroom." and "I'm grateful for squirrels," and "I'm grateful that I didn't swear when that guy cut me off today."

We haven't started our Blessing Box yet this year, but sometime over the next few days we will gather as a family and each write down some of our blessings. 

I envision it being a very full box this year. 

Here are some of the entries I plan on putting into the box: 

  • Doctors that were responsive to our concerns and got the ball rolling for Spencer to get diagnosed on the day he did.
  • A former boss who offered a generous severance package for Glen to stop working for them
  • The HR employee who was helping Glen through his termination papers, who was so stricken with our situation that she became our advocate and made sure that we stayed insured at far less cost than most people incur for COBRA insurance.
  • Family who traveled across the country on a moment's notice to lend their assistance and ensure that our kids' lives could stay as normal as possible while we were taking care of Spencer. 
  • Excellent insurance which required us to only pay very little out-of-pocket expense for Spencer's $250,000+ treatment for leukemia  {we heard several times during his treatment that our insurance was among the best they'd ever seen}
  • Myriads of doctors and nurses who used their skills to help Spencer's body to regain its health.
  • The opportunity to work through the swirl of my emotions by writing on this blog.
  • Dozens of friends who filled sign-up sheet after sign-up sheet (usually within mere minutes of them being published), so that our family could continue eating delicious and nourishing food while we took up residence in the hospital with Spence.
  • A strong network of friends, young and old, who visited regularly and made sure that Spencer was never lonely during his months in the hospital.
  • The kids' elementary school teachers who not only were sensitive to our upside down home life last school year, but also went out of their way to show support to Spencer and to us. They seriously couldn't have been any more amazing.
  • The Gospel of Jesus Christ which kept us grounded and gave us the courage and perspective we needed to face this challenge.
  • A whole network of people around the world (many who we didn't even know) that sent cards and gifts, and most importantly just prayed for our son. The thought still brings tears to my eyes.
  • The scriptures, which brought so much comfort to me--especially on those quiet mornings in the hospital when Spence would sleep late and I had none of my normal morning responsibilities.
  • Family that has continued to come visit us, even after he was better.
  • New callings at church, which we both love.
  • Five months of clean check-ups. 
  • A fitness challenge to help us get back into a better life balance.
  • A new job that Glen is excited about.
  • God's comfort and guidance through every step of the way, along with the knowledge that even in the darkest moments of our lives, that we are not forgotten.


And with that, I sign off today with one of my favorite Thanksgiving hymns and the wish that your Thanksgiving will be filled with love, joy, and lots of good food!  Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!


Ashley said...

This post made me cry. I know you've heard this many times over the last year, but your family truly is amazing. During a time when no one would blame you if you were resentful, angry, stressed and upset you have held your head high and proceeded forth through the most difficult trials with faith, peace, and even gratitude. I wish I could be more like you!! I am so grateful that your family has been blessed and I'm grateful for your examples.

Andie said...

Ditto to the above comment. It's everything I was going to say about this post.

Thanks for being such a great example to me, even across the miles.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Steve-Rosanna said...

Amen and Amen to what Ashley and Andie both said! We have all been collectively amazed by your ability to see the good and to find the silver lining in every seemingly dire situation in which you find yourselves.

We are thankful for you and Glenn-for your steadiness, your patience in trial, your abounding faith, and your unwavering love.

We love you all very much and appreciate your example of faith.

melissa said...

what a great idea! and I agree with all the above!

Happy Thanksgiving!

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