As I write this, I’m paying attention.  I’m paying attention to the words coming to me to what I hope will be a good read.  My attention inspires me.

But it hasn’t always been this way.  Being introduced to disability stole my ability to pay attention to anything.  Anything but the bottomless pit of anguish I was pushed into.  All I could pay attention to was how horribly grueling my life had become.  From the loss of my physical functioning to the loss of my psychological and emotional wellbeing.  It all hurt so bad, and there wasn’t a Band-Aid big enough to cover it. 

How could I pay attention when my world turned upside down?    Literally.  I felt like an astronaut, and like them, I had no sense of gravity.  Only when I touched something did I feel grounded. 

Then, I discovered, quite by accident, that I had something good to pay attention to.  Me.  My every moment was actually a monumental success.  Albeit wobbly, my steps went from “one step forward, two steps back” to that of straight ahead.  I paid attention to how delightful roses smell, the touch of a breeze upon my skin, soaking up sunshine.  I paid attention to the good things, to things I could look forward to spending my attention on.

I discovered that paying attention provides a whole different outlook on life.  I saw things much clearer, deeper, beautiful, and meaningful.  How everything felt new and how my relationship to it cultivated my gratitude. 

My attention turned to an awareness of the positive aspects of my life.  My attention changed my way of thinking that there is good in people, situations, and events. A positive awareness helped me develop a more optimistic outlook on my life.

It was hard work, really hard work, but I found that being aware was ignited by paying attention to my thoughts and feelings. I began kicking the negative in the ass and put my attention to the forefront.  When I faced a challenge, I always thought I couldn’t do it.  However, embracing the satisfaction I would achieve, I told myself “You can do this if you try your best and trust yourself” a much better option.  

It was an amazing feeling when by inviting attention and awareness into my life, my  gratitude grew with force.  I started paying attention to things I’m grateful for.  My family, friends, my healing, slow but sure, my creativity led me to find ways to bust through what was holding me back.

So, try to pay attention to the good stuff, be aware of how your thoughts get in the way, practice gratitude, and be kind to others. 

Start paying attention and let your light shine.

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  1. Juan Eugenio Ramirez says:

    Bravo !!!!!

    1. Cheryl Schiltz says:

      Thank you Juan!

  2. Cheryl Mahaffay says:

    I have had a G.I. disturbance for 10 days and it is been hard for me to find a lot of things to be grateful for, but I have been able to go out on my tricycle and appreciate nature and the wildlife in my neighborhood.
    I agree that it was hard to find a lot to be grateful for when I was hospitalized for a month, but generally I am able to look on the bright side. It is good not to be focused so much on myself and my pain. Again, Cheryl, you’ve given me food for thought, thank you.

    1. Cheryl Schiltz says:

      Bless your heart, Cheryl. Always look to the bright side. Much love, I hope you are well soon!

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