An LDS perspective on moving from childless to childfree living.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Gratitude versus Jealousy

I have been so busy with running a local school bond campaign, helping my mom who had knee replacement surgery, and doing my own physical therapy for a torn ACL, that I haven't had time to write.

Last week, I read an Ensign article about missionary work that had a section that titled "Gratitude Counteracts Jealousy" that could be applied to infertility.  Several quotes in the article made me think.  "I found myself being excited for other [infertile women] when they had success instead of being jealous."  "I learned that gratitude is the antidote to comparing ourselves to others."  "I also learned that while it is the Lord's pattern to give us righteous examples to emulate and follow, it is Satan's counterfeit to tempt us to compare ourselves with them in order to determine our worth or success."  "I did not need to be jealous because my fellow [infertile women] appeared to be having more success."

I realized that this is part of the paradigm shift from "childless" to "childfree" that we are working on.  I decided to consciously take moments of jealousy and find something to be grateful in those moments. 

Thursday and Friday was our state education convention.  Parents were invited to bring their children.  I saw a lot of families there.  When I had that tug on my heart that I don't have children, I felt grateful that I could go to the sessions I wanted to attend without having to worry about pushing a stroller and pacifying a child.  Yesterday, we went to the mall shopping for clothes for DH's birthday.  I saw a very PG lady sitting outside the dressing room waiting for someone while I was waiting for DH.  Again, I had that tug on my heart, but then I thought I could be grateful I am healthy.  I went to do my mom's laundry, since her laundry room is in the basement, and she can't walk stairs.  I took a moment to be grateful that I had the time to help her without worrying about what my children were doing.

This is an ongoing process, learning to be grateful instead of jealous.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Growing Old

My mom had total knee replacement surgery last Monday.  On Thursday, she was moved to a rehabilitation center that had been recommended to her by a friend; however, she had not visited it before hand.  Two hours after she arrived, she called me and told me she wanted to go home!  I asked what was wrong, and she just said she had a bad feeling there.  I went there that evening, and there were some problems:  light bulbs out, no TV remote, a filthy bathroom, no walker, unresponsive staff (not coming for longer than 5 minutes after pushing the call button), a very loud oxygen machine, and having had my mom sign a bunch of papers she was not coherent enough to understand.

I went to work advocating for her.  I did not leave that night until the bathroom was cleaned, and she had a way to walk to the bathroom and a TV remote.  My sister went on Friday morning and made arrangements to have her moved to another facility that my sister had visited.  My sister later made the comment to me that mom would be fine, but what about all the people in the first facility who did not have people to advocate for them and their care.

While who will care for me in old age does not run through my mind on a regular basis, when something like this happens, I do wonder, who will be there to advocate for me?