"I wish I didn't have a nut allergy, maybe I will outgrow it because nuts are healthy for you." Those are the words my eldest son spoke last night as we were cooking dinner together. Hard words to hear but I am grateful that he is sharing his feelings, especially about his food allergy. I wish he did not have a nut allergy but I am grateful that it's a nut allergy rather than any other unmentionable life-threatening disease.
Which brings me to the New Year…a year of learning how to be grateful! I don't usually make New Years Resolutions. I consider myself a somewhat healthy person and I try to be a better person every day, not just at New Years. I run, I volunteer, I eat fairly healthy, I raise food allergy awareness, and I encourage everyone around me to do the same. I hope that my healthy lifestyle is contagious to my children. It’s one of those times that I want my kids to learn from my actions. Actions speak louder than words, right?
Health is both mental and physical and it's important to be a positive and grateful person. I struggle with being positive and I don't want my children to have the same struggles. I see and hear the struggle in my eldest son. He faces the daily challenge of being different than his friends at the young age of seven.. Funny how it’s cool to be different and kids strive to be stand out in high school and college but in elementary school kids want to blend in. I still hear the excitement in my son’s voice this past Halloween, when we went trick or treating, when he learned that one of the kids with us also had a nut allergy. He occasionally asks why he has a food allergy and his younger brother doesn’t. To an adult it probably doesn’t seem like that big of a deal to have a food allergy and to be different. But remember, he’s seven. He can’t just go over to a friend’s house without packing an EpiPen or making food arrangements, or attend the school classroom without packing his own treat, or eat the school lunch (which is most often a blessing).
I often call my Mom for her advice and with her suggestion in 2010 I started the daily routine of having my children share 5 things that they are grateful for. I want to be a positive person and appreciate the green grass on this side and I strongly encourage my kids to do the same. This year I am taking it to the next level and we are creating a grateful jar. Dump those cookies from your cookie jar, find a basket, jar, or vase and each day write down something you are grateful for and place it in the jar. Have one jar for each of you or make a family grateful jar. Make it a part of your daily routine. Together lets grow more grateful for the people and special moments in our lives.
Today I am grateful to have this blog to share my thoughts.
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