On Gratitude and Hard Times

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Thanksgiving is OFFICIALLY the beginning of the holiday season. From now until 2018, our Facebook and Instagram feeds will be filled with pictures of pumpkin spice lattes, perfectly decorated homes and hashtags like #blessed #familyfirst #grateful.   For many people, the holidays are tough and social media doesn’t help us feel better.

Enter reality and let’s look at the night before Thanksgiving at my house:
At 8:30 pm my 6 year old threw up not one but two times. Then my 15 month old (who still wakes up at night) woke up too so I had to help clean up my son while trying to make sure my daughter didn’t step in vomit. I kept waking up all night to check on my son so when he came into my room at 6:50 am this morning to tell me he had to poop I woke up and decided to just start the day and hope it would be less of a (literal) shit storm.  Two minutes later my daughter woke up and I began the day sleep deprived, still sick and smelling like vomit!

I share this story because often times we only share the best sides of ourselves for the public to see, both online and in real life.  This year has been tough for me– there have been a lot of changes in my life– but it also has been a year where I’ve been able to feel gratitude for the things I have and how good I have it, especially compared to many others in the world.  It is the first time I can say I’m happy in a while.

Thanksgiving donuts from The Salty Donut — if you live in Miami check them out

This year: I left a toxic relationship, my baby turned 1, I made a few new friendships, I was able to connect with an old friend, I traveled to new places, got a new job, and finally started working in private practice, which  I had been dreaming of since I became an RD.

Most of my 20s were spent being ungrateful and not appreciating my life and always wanting something more.  It took a few years of adversity to really start to learn how to be present in my life and value the things I have.

Today I am grateful for where I am in my own journey and also grateful for my physical body. In the past, I was beating up myself about how I looked or things I ate, and I’ve really pushed myself to challenge some of my own expected norms.  I still have days where I struggle with my postpartum body, and I’d be lying if I’ve totally “accepted” it, but I am also grateful for all it has done and will continue to do. I am taking steps to feel more comfortable in it like working on fixing my diastasis recti, exercising a few times  a week, cooking more, continuing to enjoy all foods without guilt, and finding new clothes for my new body that makes me feel good.

If you are reading this, (though guessing by my stats only like 4 people are reading this haha) going through a hard time today or for the last few years, struggling with your body, in the midst of an eating disorder, or even a new mama that is overwhelmed with all the mental and physical changes happening, know that you are not alone. I promise this hard time will end and you will be a stronger person.

What are you grateful for?  What changes are you hoping to make in the New Year?

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