Have you ever had a pity party? Urbandictionary.com defines pity party as “A way of experiencing grief, in which you spend your time feeling sorry for yourself and whining endlessly about how crappy your life is.” Dictionary.com offers a slightly different twist: “A pity party is an instance of feeling self-indulgently sorry for yourself.”
You may have your own definition. Regardless, each one of us can experience hardship that elicits complex emotions. Life isn’t, as Mary Engelbreit suggested in 1992, “just a chair full of bowlies.” And pity parties accomplish nothing good.
You may have concerns about thieves breaking into your home and stealing precious things . . . family mementos, safeguarded coins, antiques, heirloom jewelry. Installing dusk-to-dawn, motion-detecting outdoor lighting; deadbolt locks; and security cams may thwart would-be burglars. But thieves come in many forms. Such uninvited pirates may show up at any time of the day or night to rob, bit by bit, our . . . health. The nerve! What have I hit on?! ALS ruins nerves! What does that look like for a victim of speech-onset ALS? A few personal glimpses:
Diminished ability to speak
Swallowing—even liquids—can be hazardous
Excessive saliva results in drooling
Weakening diaphragm causes undue fatigue
Ordinary tasks take an unreasonable amount of time
Jon often reminds me to be thankful for what I still have left. Pivotal. Otherwise, it’s tempting to wallow in what I’ve lost.
Please thank God today for your many unearned blessings. And when you take a bite of that In-N-Out burger or turkey thigh or pumpkin pie, chew and swallow it, be grateful. Something as seemingly insignificant as that shouldn’t be taken for granted.