This morning, I had to go have my blood drawn for my annual thyroid test. (I've been hypothyroid for almost 30 years.)
Yes, I had to go on Christmas Eve.
I would have gone earlier this month, but that might have meant missing yoga and you know how I feel about THAT. (As it was, despite the fact that my forty-six year old body was screaming for a break, the twenty-year-old in my head was MASSIVELY pouting.)
So, because I had to fast (also not my favorite thing), I went when the lab first opened this morning. I was in a bit of a dark mood, because my family had stayed up late watching a movie and the living room looked like a bomb had gone off. Ditto the kitchen.
Anyway, pre-coffee and grumpy, I sat in the waiting room, waiting my turn.
I noticed the family across from me, two parents and their little girl, roughly the same age as my eleven-year-old, Jane. As I watched them, the realization dawned on me that this was a family dealing with a catastrophic illness of a child. The little girl looked terrible--drawn and listless--and she was dealing with the repeated calls for more tests like a veteran. Her parents were studiedly upbeat, but the father's hands were shaking as he pretended to read his newspaper.
And there it was, see.
The ultimate reminder of how blessed we are. That in the midst of all of the noise of the holidays and the frustrations with the hurried rudeness of people, the good fortune of having our healthy, funny, smart, merry little band of Coopers almost slipped past me.
I inhaled the gratitude and exhaled a prayer for the little girl and her family, ashamed of my petty grievances when others are battling my worst nightmare.
May you all enjoy good health and an abundance of family (assuming that's a good thing) this holiday season. If you (or a loved one) are battling illness or addiction, may there be healing and hope today. Whatever your struggles, may you also be reminded of your blessings, and may you find a quiet moment to reflect on the bounty of this world.
And if you can spare a kind thought for a sick little girl in Huntington, New York, I know it will not be in vain.
Happy Holidays, everyone.