This week in between Christmas and New Year's is a strange one. Things are slower everywhere; businesses aren't at full capacity and schools are still out for kids. We've partied, eaten (maybe more that we should), opened gifts, been with family and friends and many of us are feeling our fill! Yet there's still some time to go in the holiday season. It's hard to stay up and cheerful all this time. And lousy weather conditions don't help.
I received a lovely gift from my niece this Christmas called a "Count Your Blessings" jar and at first, I wasn't thrilled. Yes, I know I need and should be grateful. Yes, I know I'm very blessed. But my life isn't exactly where I want it to be (bet some of you feel that way) so feeling "grateful" wasn't something I wanted to be reminded about. And then today came...
I was supposed to leave to get home to Chicago. I knew weather had been bad across the country but since we were busy with holiday events, hadn't really seen the news. I looked at my weather app last night before I went to bed and things didn't look good but also not terrible. At 6 this morning, my phone went off with a text from the friend who was picking me up at the airport, warning me that the weather in Chicago was pretty bad and I should look into my flight. I promptly went online and saw warning alerts I'd never seen before on Southwest. They were basically saying, "Change your plans, you're not going to fly today!"
Now what you all don't know is I had a doctor's appointment today that was important for me to attend. I had some minor surgery before Christmas and the sutures needed to be removed today. I needed to get to Chicago by 3:00. With the pending weather delays, I knew it would be virtually impossible to get home in time for that appointment. I made the decision to change my flight to tomorrow (btw, as I was writing this blog, the airlines called and that flight's been cancelled too!) and go to urgent care here to remove the stitches. All went very well, sutures were removed and as I called the Chicago doctor's office to cancel my appointment today, I was informed the office wouldn't be open in the afternoon and the nurse who insisted I come there so she could remove them, wasn't even in. They had mis-scheduled my appointment to January 28th! I would have knocked myself out trying to make a 3:00 appointment that didn't exist and arrive at a closed doctor's office!
So now I'm thinking about that jar...the one I didn't want or feel I needed. And yet in one day, I've had countless blessings! The text from my friend, the family I'm with who were happy to have me stay, the walk-in clinic who took care of my medical need, finding out I didn't have the appointment I thought I did, not being at a chaotic airport right now and instead, safe and warm in a lovely home writing this blog, receiving another alert from the airline and getting on a later flight tomorrow.
So as the New Year approaches and these "in between" days unfold, count your blessings. They're all around you if you look for them. I needed a big reminder and got one today. Maybe you do too. Happy New Year, everyone. Here's to a blessing-filled 2016.
Ann Foster, MTS, LCPC, CADC, CMAT, CDWF
President ~ Executive Director