Focus on the positive

Philippians 4:8,9 Complete Jewish Bible (CJB)

Lately I’ve received many messages centered around a common theme: transitioning from negativity to positivity as a way of initiating healthy growth and change in life. This is not a new message.  After all, as Solomon, the wisest man in the Old Testament, declared, “There is nothing new under the sun.”

The thing about me is that for such a bright person, I tend to resist enlightenment.  My habitual path of least resistance tends to be one of intense and detailed focus on the less than positive.  I have developed the ability to downplay a compliment in such a way as to cause the one offering it confusion and consternation to the point they hesitate to offer another in the future.  I have a lifelong case of the “yeah, buts.”  You know, offer a positive spin and possible solution only to hear, “Yeah, but blah, blah, blah,” as the reason why it won’t work for me. True confession: this is a major pet peeve of mine. Yep, can’t stand it when I experience that very thing with other people.

See, even now it’s happening. I began this post in order to practice the power of positive thinking, and I started off with the negative. Ah, well, perhaps that just gives perspective to why what comes next is such a shift of tectonic proportions for me.

I did good.

I am good.

I am doing good.

All is well. I am well. Wellness is within my grasp.

In the midst of the apathy and inertia of the depression and fibromyalgia, I still followed up and through with getting Luna connected, evaluated, and enrolled with programs and supportive services that will help her and us to move forward in constructive and healthy ways.  She began attending the Family Relief Nursery two mornings a week and we started the Make Parenting a Pleasure class last week, which gives her a third morning of structured socialization.  Her Head Start home visits start tomorrow and the behavioral/play therapy begins for us on Wednesday.  She’s being referred for articulation services from the Early Intervention program.  Since I had followed through on obtaining the primary teacher’s contact information and made sure to sign all the consents to release information between her, the other programs/services, and the Early Intervention assessors, based on the information they received, they are doing a more in depth evaluation to determine if there is need and eligibility for additional supportive services for Luna. Yay God for providing all these opportunities and yay me for taking action on them.

While I have been in self-imposed isolation and chose to avoid and back out on several occasions to see and be seen socially and publicly over the past three months and especially the past three weeks, there have been significant occasions where I made the choice to put myself “out there” and interact with others in spite of all the inner voices and thoughts striving to reinforce my isolation.  I attended my 25 year reunion. I reached out, responded, and followed through on plans to get together with old friends as well as opening myself up to gather with possible future friends. I made calls, sent texts, chatted, and sent messages to key people I have been hesitant or just not willing to be available to. Regardless of the outcome of those encounters, and most of them were fantastic, the mere fact that I made those choices means I wasn’t letting the depression completely take over and beat me all the way down.  That’s a win and I’m celebrating that.

Nope, unh uh, this is not the place for me to start listing all that is yet to be achieved and all that didn’t get done. Not going there, so those thoughts need to just go away.

As long as I am alive and breathing, there is hope.

There is hope that my relationship with Marco will be renewed and restored.  He isn’t completely unavailable and distanced from me.  So, even though there is grieving to be done about our past together, there is much to be thankful for in the here and now: He has a job he’s doing well in that is giving him growth and stability.  He has a fiancee who wants to include his biological family in their lives. He is happy, healthy, and maturing in his faith and other relationships.  In time, however much may be needed, there will be opportunity for healing and growth in ours.

There is hope that LaLa is building and growing toward the person she wants to be.  She has chosen to spend her time and energy in a state she despises in a town where she knows almost no one in order to provide support, companionship, and care to a lifelong family friend, her godmother, who is having difficulty recovering from her latest surgery. Generously sprinkled among the many status updates any mom would prefer not to see, I find wise and wonderful nuggets of thoughtfulness, insight, and wisdom. She is finding her way and it is her path to discover.

As much as I regret and have unresolved sorrow over the pain and chaos I contributed to their lives, it is past time for me to see what is good and praiseworthy about them and their lives and believe that I participated in those aspects as well.  I have worked hard to learn, grow, and overcome so many things. Doing that enabled me to make choices to counterbalance the painful and difficult things in their lives.  I love them, I have always loved them, and I will continue to love them.  That is worth celebrating in and of itself.

What negative thing in your life can you seek and receive the positive in today?


  1. I have a friend who kept telling me that when someone gives me a compliment I should just say thank you period and not say another a word. It was hard at first, but now I just do it and hold my tongue on all the yeah buts that follow in my head. Try it, it’s not as hard as it sounds. 🙂


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