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How I’m Learning to Replace Whining With Gratitude

I recently finished reading through Choosing Gratitude by Nancy Leigh DeMoss. Her challenge for us to adopt a spirit of thankfulness — no matter our situation — caused me to step back and realize that I’ve become a whiner in recent months.

You see, I’m normally a pretty upbeat, look-on-the-bright-side-of things type of person. But I’ve had some lingering health and allergy issues that have not gone away for months.

I’ve tried so many different things: drastic change in diet (I’ve been off all refined and processed foods for a number of weeks), change in skincare routine, change in allergy medicines… nothing is really making a big difference and I’ve been waiting for quite some time to be able to get in for testing with an allergist.

In the mean time, I’ve been struggling with incessant cold-like symptoms and it’s been wearing on me. As a result, my poor husband has heard a lot of whining over the last few months. Instead of my usual early morning excitement about the day’s events or my cheery report when he gets home from work, he’s often getting the rundown on my latest health problems — which is pretty much the same old, same old every single day.

Reading Choosing Gratitude really helped me see how I’ve been focusing on the things I was struggling with, instead of choosing to be thankful. And not only that, but I felt so convicted at how I was griping over something so petty.

Sure, allergies are no fun (as I’m positive many of you can attest to), but seasonal allergies pale in comparison to some of the life-threatening, debilitating, and/or overwhelmingly incomprehensible issues so many people are facing right now. And I have much to be grateful for — much that I’ve been taking for granted while I was having a pity-party for myself.

Because of Nancy’s encouragement through Choosing Gratitude, I started a Gratitude Journal and I’ve challenged myself to make a daily habit of waking up each morning and starting my day by filling out an entire notebook page with things I’m thankful for.

At first, it seemed rather daunting — especially since I’ve gotten out of the exercise of journaling the past few years. But you know what I’m finding as the days go on? The notebook page is feeling smaller and smaller each morning!

There’s something about starting the day with counting your blessings that just helps change your whole attitude about the day. And the more I’m focusing on my blessings, the less my allergies and health issues have seemed to matter.

In fact, I haven’t even thought to give Jesse one of my normal moping health reports over the last few days. I guess that’s another thing I can add to my Gratitude List for tomorrow! 🙂

photo credit

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88 Comments

  • Jo says:

    I have to say that I have had a miserable summer every summer since moving to Kansas because of seasonal allergies until this year. The difference? I finally got over my phobia of using a neti pot. After the sinus infection that turned into pneumonia last summer, I realized I needed to just try it. Neti pot twice a day, flonase twice a day, and zyrtec once a day and life is good. Hang in there!

    • Angela says:

      I don’t use the neti pot but I do use a squirt bottle to irrigate my sinusus and it makes a huge difference!

  • Margaret says:

    I decided years ago to be grateful for what I have and that I am here,12 years ago I was told I prob. only had 6 months maybe…I have had 18 surgurys and 112 ct scans and pet scans and mri scans bone scans and so many biopsys I quit counting blood tests -chemo, radiation and dr. visits every week for years, Not just that my husband shaved my head, and learned to clean my central line and held my head while I threw up more times than I can count..I am not telling you this for sympathy-dont need it I have had god on my side all this time, he never told us we would have a perfect life he just told us he would be there.. and you know the worse thing that happened during all this , my daughter who turned 13 the day I was diagnosed had to come home from school and call her grammy to come check and see if I was still alive because I looked so bad and was so tired I couldnt wake up…If I could change any of it thats what I would change… so sweetheart just know god has this handled to I am not saying my problem is any worse than yours I am saying everyone has something that is a burden but know that god sees you and knows and is there…

  • Carrie says:

    I am right there with you – I have had some hard health issues this summer. I have never had allergies, and just this summer I have been attacked with allergy problems. Everyday, I TRY to start out in a good mood, but I find myself whining and feeling sorry for myself before I have even brushed my teeth. I am definitely going to start the journal today and check out Choose Gratitude. Thanks so much!

  • Sarah says:

    Praying the allergist gives you some answers. I take my allergy meds before going to bed and started getting shots and it changed my life. Things like putting dust mite blocking pillowcases and eliminating all fragrances also really helped. Chloretrempton works better then anything else it’s old school and cheap!

  • Ranna says:

    I’ve been going through terrible morning sickness and have been trying not to whine so much, I love this post. I also wanted to second the Chlor-Trimeton and the Neti-Pot. Being pregnant I have so little that I can take… but these together really help me more than my former regimen. That regimen was Flonase, Singulair and Allegra together. Hope you feel better soon!

  • That’s fantastic to hear! What a blessing to your whole family (and your readers also). I’ve recently started a blessings journal myself, although it ends up in my head more often than on the paper. I really need to be more intentional about that. Thanks for the book suggestion and the little reminder to commit my blessings to paper!

  • Diana says:

    I may just have to read that…I also have had a super negative attitude lately and can’t for the life of me figure out how to get out of it. I’m especially negative about other people and I don’t like being that way. Thanks for plugging the book!
    diana

  • Kimberly says:

    FYI – There is an easy fix for seasonal allergies….get some local honey and take a tablespoon every morning and your allergies will disappear. I have recommended this to many people and they swear by it now. You can also use it in tea and other things but just make sure that you take at least a teaspoon every day. The idea is that your system builds up immunity little by little to the allergiens, thereby decreasing the amount of histamine your body produces to things in your environment that it does not like so much. Need about about a month or so to see some results. Good luck!

    • Laurie G says:

      The honey should be ideally coming within a 5 mile radius of your home. I have heard good things about this.

  • Amy F;) says:

    When I was going through my months of allergy-related? sinus infections, my best friend sent me a copy of that book…I had a stack of books to be read on my nightstand already at the time so I only glanced at. My sinus problem has cleared up immensely, but I still have that book somewhere and I have a feeling I whine entirely too much about other things so I’ll give it a read as soon as I can remember where I put it:) I’ll step up the prayers again for you too! I know how hard it can be.

  • Rae says:

    So sorry to hear you have had a rough couple of months. I too have suffered from allergies/asthma which started ten yrs ago. After being on 2 inhalers, a nasal spray, and a prescription I had had enough and visited the chiropractor. After a couple of months I was able to get rid of all of my meds and have been without them for the past 8 1/2 yrs. I do continue to visit the chiro every three weeks for a wellness visit and haven’t had sinus infections/bronchitis since. Also, I am a strong believer in alfalfa pills from Shaklee, not store brand. It is a God send! Praying you will find the right solution for you!

    • Jenni says:

      That’s amazing. I have been wanting to find a good chiropractor for this very reason, but we’re new to the area and are not sure who’s good.

      • Lis says:

        Jenni–
        Do keep looking for a good chiropractor. True chiropractic is not about getting rid of symptoms but about proper nerve flow and helping your body to work at its best without interference. That being said, there are many symptoms that do happen to respond well to it. Just make sure you find what used to be called a “straight” chiropractor and one who adjusts by hand.

  • Jenni says:

    I hope you find some insight with your allergist too. I’m in the middle of an elimination diet right now, mainly to figure out what might be going on with our son, but our entire family is on it. Allergies are no fun!

  • Christy says:

    I had the opportunity to read and do a book study on this about 2 yrs ago and God’s timing was so perfect as I was really struggling through not getting pregnant and trying to figure out what our family would look like. Obviously there are to many details to go into, but I love God’s perfect timing of the study I did and He knew how much I needed to put my focus on Him and trust Him and not focus on my situation. God did give us direction and we have been blessed with a precious little girl through adoption. I also needed that reminder again! Thanks for sharing!!!!

  • Lynn says:

    I swear by local raw unfiltered honey!! It works wonders on my allergies! I use it in everything! It takes a few weeks for it to build up in your system! Give it a try!!

  • Andrea says:

    Wow! What a timely post! I have been suffering (and trying not to whine too much) with my allergies for more than a year. (But has been off and on for 8 years.) It has been a journey that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. My eyes, and lips get really red and itchy, sore, cracked and painful. It took 4 months to see an allergist and we were only starting to find things out (It’s confirmed that I’m allergic to wheat – that explains the tummy pains) when he retired. So, I’m waiting for allergist #2 – here in beautiful BC, Canada, I had to start the process from scratch- and I’m waiting another 4 months to see this doc. – which thankfully the appt is in 2 weeks. Anyhow, there are days I can’t bear to look at myself in the mirror – my lips and eyes look so raw – it can be very depressing. I can’t wear makeup, I can’t colour my hair (allergic to hair dye) and I have people ask me “are you the grandma of that little girl”. I gulp and say “no, the mom.” and I have to look away, I just want to cry. But I look at my 4yo little girl and I am SO grateful and blessed to have her and a wonderful husband – who says I’m beautiful dispite my health issues. I know this will pass but in the meantime, this book sounds like great – and comes at the right time! All the best to you! You’ll be in my prayers too.

    • Crystal says:

      {Hugs!} to you! I am so sorry and pray you are able to find some relief and encouragement soon. I’ve struggled with eczema all of my life and this year it’s moved to my face, so I can relate in a small way to what you’ve been going through.

  • Kim says:

    Crystal,

    Thank you so much for mentioning this book! I really want to read it!

    Also, I wanted to give you a website to check out Nasopure. It really helps with allergies & colds. They sell it locally here, because Dr. Hana is a local pediatrician. If you can’t purchase it locally, I’m sure you can find it online. The website has a how to video. It helps wash out the allergens from the nose, which helps relieve allergens, viruses, etc. I’m an RN & I know a lot of people use it twice a day. No prescription required. The key is the angled bottle. You can make a salt water solution with just table salt & tap water to use in it, or you can purchase her packets. Just google saline nasal wash recipe. After having a virus for weeks (ugh!), I got over it quickly once I started using this. Here’s the website—http://nasopure.com/

  • Krystal says:

    Hi Crystal,

    I appreciate you sharing your heart and your honesty! This was a encouraging reminder I needed to hear,.. and I’m excited to try out the thankfulness journal! God bless you and I pray you are able to find something to help you feel back to normal!! Until then, may we both grow in learning to be content in all circumstances as Paul encourages us to 🙂

    <3 krystal

  • Just know, Crystal, that we are very grateful for YOU.

  • Joyce says:

    This couldn’t have come at a better time! I have had dental pain for the past 6 weeks, had three crowns and one was not made properly. After a month I decided to find a new dentist and am having it replaced this morning. Yesterday I found out that insurance had denied the claim as unnecessary because the teeth weren’t broken (the dentist was trying to avoid that by doing the crowns) so I have to pay even more on the first round, and pay today to have it fixed. I cannot describe the level of pain you have with an improper crown and having your bite off. But as someone told me, at least you have teeth! Thanks for all of your inspiration, and hope you get some relief soon!

  • Melissa says:

    Lovely post! When my husband and I were having marriage troubles 8 years ago, we decided every night to come up with 3 things we were grateful that the other did that day. At first it was hard, but doing that every night really helped us appreciate each other and grow closer.

  • Su says:

    Thank you for your continued honesty. I guess we’re all a bit guilty of too much complaining & not enough gratitude.

    Kind of like, “eat the frog first”….I’m going to work on this too!

    Hope you’re feeling better soon….I will pray for you.

  • I keep a thankful journal by my bed and each night before I go to sleep I write down 3 to 5 things I am thankful for. It could be something that happened that day, or something I was given that day, or something nice someone said to me that day. I thank God for all of it. I find it really does help my mind quiet down at the end of the long day as well as keep me positive.

    • Patti says:

      I do that, too! It does help to change your attitude when you are looking all day for things to be grateful for so you can record them at night!

      • Patti says:

        Oops the reply button doesn’t seem to be working… I was replying to Victoria@snailpacetransformations. : )

  • Chanda says:

    Thank you for sharing. This should totally be the next 40 day challenge!

  • Christine says:

    Crystal, I suggest you consider reading “Green for Life” by Victoria Boutenko. She states that most health problems are a result of little to no raw greens. Her book is very interesting. Victoria also states that we do not properly chew our food which prevents our bodies from absorbing vitamins and minerals in what we eat AND because our food is not properly digested this causes a number of health problems, including allergies. The back of the book has a number of raw green smoothie recipes. If I remember right, she states that our diet should be mostly greens and most the nutrition we need comes from the greens. My library has the book so check your’s.

    On another note, I suffered from chronic allergies most of my life. I was allergic to dust, pollen and a variety of grasses and trees. About 7 years ago, I was fed up with my allergies and while searching on the internet discovered a site regarding excess candida and its symptoms. While I only had a few of the symptoms, I decided to take a supplement to rid my body of excess candida. I think I took it for 3 months. The candida cleanse worked and allergy symptoms are close to non-existent. I was EXTREMELY sensitive to cats and was miserable when we went to my parents home as they had 3 cats. Now I have almost no reaction to cats. I still avoid touching them to be on the safe side but it is such a relief to not have a sneezing attack when I walk through the door. And I no longer wake up with a chronically stuffy nose since my dust allergy is virtually gone.

    Just a few things to consider. I hope you feel better soon. Thank you for your support and hard work.

    • Crystal says:

      Thanks for the suggestion. I’m eating a LOT of greens and raw foods now as part of the diet I’m currently on, as well as eating good yogurt and taking a good probiotic everyday — so far, changing my diet hasn’t affected my allergies at all but at least I know that I am only putting really good stuff in me, so at least it can’t be hurting anything! 🙂

      I’m so grateful you are doing so much better with your allergies — what a blessing!

    • Melinda says:

      Can I ask what supplement can get rid of excess candida?? I thought you had to go on a strict diet for months. Please let us know!!!

      • Melinda says:

        This reply was for Christina. Sorry looks like the reply isn’t working

      • Christine says:

        I took the supplement about 7 years ago. I remembered I ordered the supplement on Amazon so I searched my orders and found the exact product:

        Rainbow Light Candida Cleanse

        I don’t know why this worked for me but it did. I took 3 pills a day until the bottle was empty and have had VERY little trouble with allergies since. I do not recall changing my diet.

  • Lori says:

    Oh can soooo relate! I have had “health” issues in the past few years and the more I research the more I find that the cause is my unhealthy choices.

    Have you heard of the GAPS diet? Written by a neurologist, she cured her son of severe autism through diet! Anyway, she says that there are very few true allergies! The problem is our compromised digestive tract that can’t process our food correctly and therefore can’t extract the nutrients from our food. Good news is that through a temporary diet change, you can heal the gut and allergies are a thing of the past. It’s getting to the cause instead of just dealing with the symptom or just eliminating to avoid the symptom. Many families from church have done it and cured themselves of many disorders including severe seasonal allergies, food allergies, ADHD issues, learning disorders, skin issues, weight gain, hormonal issues, etc. Anyway, sorry for the long comment but you can check it out here: http://www.gapsdiet.com/ Hope it helps!

    I will check out the book, too. Finding joy in my suffering is never easy for me even knowing that God wants we to! I can use all the help I can get!

    Christ’s peace to you!

    • Crystal,
      I had worsening allergy issues and immune issues (sick a lot, no energy, frequent infections) for years, then my skin started itching all the time! It was awful. God brought various people into my life with pieces of the answers, and I’d say I’m 90% better. For me, an elimination diet helped me realize it was gluten PLUS dairy PLUS corn PLUS Diet Coke (what? I have no idea, but it makes me itch.). It was like solving a mystery. I’d encourage you to keep a food diary. I agree with both of the above posters–the yeast issue and the GAPS diet helped me. It may be something totally different for you, but the food issue has been at the root of the health problems of so many women I know, especially severe and unusual allergies, that it might be worth more mystery solving. Also, if you allergist finds that you are allergic to 30 things, it’s probably an underlying allergy to a few things (wheat, corn, dairy are common) that sends your body into allergen overdrive. My tests showed I was allergic to about 30-50 things, but it was really a few big allergies masking others. I’ll be praying God would lead you to the right answers. I also second the idea of the next 40 day challenge being one for gratitude! 🙂

  • Andie says:

    I have life threatening allergies. believe me, I can totally appreciate allergies wearing you down. If you are looking for a nasal spray, check out sinofresh. it is a homeopathic spray and does wonders for sinus headaches, the draining that makes your throat scratchy and it is the only one i’ve come across that does kill viruses.

    I do not keep a gratitude journal, I find the practice a little too rigid for me but what I do to practice mindful gratitude is I keep a change jar in my home office. I pay cash for everything so whenever I get any change back at the store it goes into that jar. Every penny I put into that jar I say out loud 1 thing I’m grateful for.

  • Christy says:

    I see a few people suggested Neti Pot or similar items. I would use bottled water for this. I have a Neti Pot I got free that I have never used. I read something about a handful of people dying from using it with tap water and getting an infection.

    • Emily says:

      Bottled water is a good suggestion, or boiling the tap water first. It’s a rare problem but not worth the risk since it’s completely preventable.

      If anyone is interested, the organism is naegleria fowleri and it causes almost universally fatal meningitis. If you drink contaminated water the organism is killed in your stomach (and not a threat), but if you put it up your nose the organism can access the veins in your sinuses and attack your brain.

  • Rox says:

    I love Nancy Leigh Demoss books. You will find her books so encouraging and very convicting. May God give you the strength you need to keep going. Blessings!

  • Katie says:

    I’m glad you enjoyed the book! I read it a couple months ago and now my ladies Sunday School class at church is going through it. It has been very beneficial to me too!

  • Lana says:

    Through about 22 years of being so allergic and miresable that I could barely function there were many, many days that all I could do was say ‘thank you God for my allergies’ with tears running down my face. I am so blessed that He has almost healed me at this point but through that time gratitiude was the thing that I clung to because I did not have anything else.

    • courtney says:

      I have always suffered from allergies too. Until when I was pregnant my midwives suggested Alfalfa. I started taking it in tablet form every day. It takes a few months to “kick in” but I RARELY have any allergy problems. Maybe a couple days each season when the pollen is the worst. I never have to take any OTC medication and I dislike the netti pot too 🙂 We do eat a lot of local honey too. Hope you are feeling better, hate being sick!

      • Lana says:

        Alfalfa has been a big part of my healing. It turns an acidic (sick) body into and alkaline (well) body. Our acidic bodies are a big reason that we as Americans are so sick.

  • Wendy says:

    Great post!! I think we can all learn to stop whining and complaining so much, and just be thankful for God’s blessings in our lives!
    I am reading a book called ‘The Gluten Connection’, by Shari Liberman, and it is very informative about gluten in foods and the discomforts it causes some people. Everything from allergies, Lupus, digestive disorders and skin rashes are sometimes connected to our gluten intake.
    Just my 2 cents!
    Have a great day!!

  • Jennifer says:

    Have you tried a massage? A Swedish relaxation massage can drastically change your attitude and outlook on current stresses. Think of it as your personal hour of power. You have a whole lot on your plate, just taking one hour to devote to you yourself can be a real mood boost. Clear your mind, reduce stress, produce more white blood cells to fight infections better, improve circulation, the list of benefits goes on and on. It’s amazing what one hour can do for your body, mind, and soul. Frugal tip — find a local massage therapy school and go when the students do clinic and work on the public, its usually at a very discounted price of $20, granted you are a guinea pig for them but you still get the physical benefits that you would get from a professional therapist especially if you request just relaxation.
    Also for your sinus stuff going on there might be a local therapist in your area that offers a sinus massage. They would use a hot towel with a little eucalyptus oil first, do a massage on your face and sinus pressure points followed by something cold therapy. It won’t cure your allergies but it will help improve the symptoms and encourage better drainage.
    I hope you are able to take an hour for yourself, try it out and write a post about how you felt. I’ve listed helpful tip, a frugal tip, and a future post idea. If I was closer I’d give you a free one just for you to blog about it. 😉 Bless you.

  • Jacki says:

    I have multiple health issues too. MS is the biggest problem for me. I am grateful everyday when I can open my eyes and see and stand up when I get out of bed. My neighbor told me last night that she is jealous of me because I have 4 girls and she only has one child. She said that she is strong enough to work 12 hour days but it doesn’t compare to having children. Boy, did that hit me. I am grateful for my precious children and my not so tidy house.

    • Sporksoma says:

      Sometimes it’s hard to remember how wonderful your kids are, but when you take a minute and think it over, suddenly you remember how wonderful they are and it’s like having them all over again.

  • Lindsey Bell says:

    I love the idea of a gratitude journal every morning. Thanks for sharing!

  • Stacey says:

    If you’re struggling with season allergies, I strongly recommend the neti pot. It’s not as gross as I thought it would be and I (weirdly) enjoy it now! It helps to keep your sinuses lubricated and clean so you don’t develop a sinus infection (something I struggle with each spring). I’ve also heard lots of positive feedback about incorporating local honey into your diet (as previous poster mentioned). Also, have you tried a glass of hot water with fresh lemon in the morning? It’s supposed to get your lymphatic system moving so you start the morning cleared up. Not sure if you have central A/C, but make sure you change your filter regularly. They make ones with HEEPA (??) filters in them as well. Good luck and I hope you feel better soon! Allergies are no fun.

  • BethB says:

    What a great post! While I manage to keep a positive and grateful attitude on the inside I recently realized my demeanor and words may be communicating the opposite to those around me. Thanks for the reminder.

  • Need A Nap2 says:

    It’s refreshing to hear someone else struggling with allergies, I feel like I don’t “feel good” often. I’d highly suggest blood allergy testing over the typical skin pricking tests (or both). I’ve read other blogs where they talk about “sensitivities” that the skin prick doesn’t seem to catch. Our family doctor discussed it with my husband instead of referring him straight to an allergist doctor. He hasn’t done anything yet due to cost. Thanks for pointing us all toward contentment and gratitude. 🙂

  • Autumn says:

    Crystal, I had Horrible allergies and they completely vanished. I think when I got off the cows milk, added in Local Raw honey (sparingly) and reduced dairy in general. Funny thing is that I never implemented those things to cure the allergies I was just trying to improve my overall health and one day it just dawned on me that my allergies disappeared. Lol

  • Meredith Roxburgh says:

    Crystal,
    We have had the exact same thing happen. I don’t know if it was like this by you, but we have had horrible allergies in FL. They said it was because we had a warm winter. I understand…we have had constant allergies and it is more common for me to have “stuffy” days rather than better. Hang in there!

  • Rachael says:

    Keep staying strong Crystal- you are really trying to get to the bottom of it and taking great steps to get through it and that’s very admirable! I think a lot of us know what it’s like to have a lingering health issue that really gets in the way of daily life and throws it off. I hope you can recover soon!

  • Emily says:

    Thank you for this! I have had a hard time with my feelings of returning to work (even if my mom is the person watching my 4-month old). My baby has been crying a lot, but I was reminded just today that there are so many people who would give anything to have a fussy baby.

  • Heather A says:

    http://www.nutritionalfocus.com/productpages/apex7.htm

    Crystal, I know you’ve gotten so many suggestions for things to try. I hate to add another, but I really feel like I have to . :>)
    I grew up in Missouri and Illinois and “allergy season” for me was pretty much from April to November, and again when we started using the woodstove in the winter. :>(

    A few years ago, my doctor (who prescribes homeopathics as well as regular meds, depending on the situation) had me do a 30 day course of 2 Aller-Tox products, and I have NOT had allergy problems since then. (We’re talking BAD allergies to NO allergies, except I still get stuffy if I’m exposed to a lot of cat hair or mold, but my symptoms don’t linger after exposure is over.)

    The products I took were the first two listed on that link above. They are Aller-Drain and Aller-Total. I took them together, morning and night, for 30 days. After that, I could have continued with the Aller-Total for maintenance but didn’t need to . (I’m not an expert, so I don’t know what the recommended dosage initially or over time should be, I just know what worked for me.)

    At any rate, I hope you find some relief. It is so hard to function normally when you are clogged or draining or clogged and draining + achy and irritable.

    Also, for that “elephant on the head” kind of pressure that often comes with allergies or changes in barometric pressure outside (humid conditions especially), I take a product made by Standard Process Labs called AC Carbamide. (Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Carbamide – go figure!) I’m not sure that “elephant on the head syndrome” is listed as one of the indications for that supplement, but I do know that myself and several friends use it for that purpose and it does work. (Something about equalizing pressure between cell walls and …. I don’t know the scientific part. :>)

    Hope you are feeling better soon!

  • Jenna says:

    Hi Crystal, do you think this might be a depleted immune system from too much stress? I know that I had been dealing with alot of health issues myself and found stress to be the fundamental cause of all of it. Also I realized that the things that I was saying to myself and striving for perfection was complicating the issue. One book I found helpful was Feeling Good by David Burns. Just a thought. I just Homeschool 3 kids and find it very stressful. I can’t even immagine running a blog and the publicity of a book deal with that. I will keep you in my prayers. God Bless.

    • Crystal says:

      With all the research I’ve done over the last few months, that’s one thing that we’ve considered could be a factor. In case it is, I’ve cut back a lot more over the past two months, am getting a lot more rest, have a lot more margin in my life, and am trying to make sure and include plenty of things in my life that really refresh and energize me.

      So far, it hasn’t changed my allergies, but at least I’m feeling a lot more rested and energetic, despite walking around with a tissue much of the time! 🙂

      By the way, thanks for everyone’s input. I wasn’t really expecting all the input and health suggestions, but I appreciate your kind concern for me.

  • Anna says:

    I feel like I could have written this post. The last two months have been unusually challenging health/allergy-wise, and I never had allergies before. But I realized last week that I was doing the same thing; griping to my husband about this or that symptom all the time. It’s like every conversation was about how yucky I was feeling. He was getting really weary of my complaining. And I realized a couple days ago, that even though I have been unusually ill for me, I am still wonderfully healthy as compared to so many others I know. I realized I was complaining to some of them, too, and that really made me ashamed. Time to buck up, be grateful that my sinuses are the only health issue I have, and move on with life. This too shall pass, after all. And anything God was trying to teach me through illness is lost on me if I don’t see even this circumstance as part of His plan for me.

  • Charity says:

    Hey Crystal – OPC-3 supplementation is wonderful for anyone who wants to tell their allergies goodbye. I’ll include a link so you can read about them and a link to where you can purchase the most absorbable form on the market.
    Hope you feel all better soon!
    http://www.livestrong.com/article/181733-benefits-of-opc-3/

    http://www.marketamerica.com/product-2217/isotonix-opc3.htm

  • Marisa says:

    Thanks for posting this! I have been thinking a lot lately about being more positive. I have been extra tired from pregnancy and mild depression and I haven’t liked how I’ve gotten more negative about myself and others. I’m excited to read the book and to start a gratitude journal. I was just talking to my husband about a lady we recently met because we both noticed how positive she is and how uplifting it is to be around her. I want to be like that! Thanks for a step in the right direction :-).

  • Ramona says:

    I started allergy shots again after stopping them about 15 years ago. I was sick with head colds at least 5 times a year. It got so bad that people at work would ask me..”are you sick again?” These were not a couple days of sniffles but 2-3 weeks of a severe head cold, usually followed by a sinus infection. It’s hard to be cheerful when you feel this way.

    Since I started the shots about a year and a half ago, I had one time when I didn’t feel so good with some congestion for a couple of days but that’s it. I am most grateful for allergy shots.

  • Alexandra F says:

    Have you gotten yourself tested for allergies? A few years ago my husband (who had never previously had allergies) all of the sudden is allergic to everything. No allergy meds worked. He had horrible cold like symptoms for several weeks being stubborn finally went to see a specialist.

    They ran a bunch of tests and his body hit its threshold and now is allergic to all sort of things that he had previously not been allergic too. He had to go for the next year and get weekly shots. The shots helped and he hasn’t had much problems since.

    • Crystal says:

      I’ve been waiting for weeks to get in for allergy testing — my appointment is in two weeks and I’m hoping we’ll be able to get some answers!

  • Erica Hall says:

    Thank you Crystal- it always seems as if you are speaking directly to me. My husband lost his job today and I am a SAHM mom that has become unable to work due to medical problems. I have been in the same boat of not being as grateful as I should be but his coming home with a final check was a big wake up call that things were really not as bad as they could be. I’m going to need a lot of your inspiration 🙂

    • Crystal says:

      {Hugs to you, Erica!} I’m so sorry about your husband’s job loss and will pray for peace, provision, and some quick job leads to turn up.

  • debbielynne says:

    I love this. Would it be to much to ask for you to photograph one day’s page of your journal to share?

  • Sporksoma says:

    Don’t forget to give yourself permission to feel bad. If you don’t, that feeling bad builds up and up until it overwhelms you.

  • Sasha says:

    I just read this post, and my husband is an allery sufferer as well. One thing you can try to help relieve some of your symptoms while you are waiting for your appointment is a netti pot or a sinus rinse product. It has help my husband a great deal.

  • deborah says:

    It isn’t fun to not feel well. I have days that I feel yucky and I know it affects everything, BUT there is always a brighter side! It is just so easy to forget to look for it! I’m really inspired by the idea of a gratitude journal. I recently read, One Thousand Gifts, which is, of course, basically the same idea. I just hadn’t made concrete the idea of a whole seperate journal for thanksgiving!

  • Penny says:

    I’m not sure anyone has mentioned this, but I’m assuming you have carpeting and rugs in your home? Have you recently bought new furniture? The off-gassing might be aggravating your allergies.

    I’d recommend reading ‘Healthy Child, Healthy World’ by Christopher Gavigan. He explains it a lot better than I could! 😉

  • Busy Mom says:

    Crystal, thanks for this post… so inspirational! Great idea to count your blessings every morning! Glad to hear you are feeling better!

  • Marie says:

    Crystal thanks for your honesty. I am always so encouraged by your blog. It’s the one thing I make time to read everyday. And also all the other readers comments. It’s such a blessing.
    Gratitude really makes such a difference in my life. I recently had a friend abruptly end the friendship with no explanation or anything. I was really left bewildered and hurt. It also meant that my kids could no longer play with her kids and they literally would ask everyday to play with them. What do you tell a 5 year old when you don’t know yourself. I was really getting down about the situation and feeling like I was a horrible person, even though I didn’t know any reason for the end of the friendship. Instead of focusing on the other friendships in my life I let this one drain all my joy!
    When I realized it I started thanking God for the other friendships and focusing on those and seeing that I wasn’t a bad friend or person. I struggle with rejection alot. I also began praying for the friend who ended the friendship and just asked God to bless her. It’s hard when we live in the same neighborhood and our kids are in similar activities for the summer. But I would just pray for her, which really helped me to not be so down. And you know what? Yesterday, she tearfully apologized to me!!!! I didn’t see that coming. I was able to embrace her, forgive her and move forward. God can do all things.

  • Melissa says:

    I think it’s great that you are chosing to stay positive and start your day off with reminding yourself of how many things you have to be thankful for! I know a lot of people have suggested trying a Neti pot for your allergies. I can be added to the list of people this has worked for. Oddly I am allergic to almost all allergy medicine so the Neti pot is just about the only thing I can use. I was reluctant to try it but after my hay fever got so unbearable I decided to give it a try. Now I don’t think anything about doing it every morning. It sure beats dealing with allergies! The Neti pot would be on my list of things I’m grateful for! 🙂

  • Heather says:

    i enjoy your blog daily. and have for a few years now. just a thought: have your home tested for mold, if you haven’t already.
    i pray you get some answers quickly!

  • Theresa says:

    My Sunday school class really enjoyed this book too. I’ve found it’s helped me to stop and look at the positives of situations…like a specialist appt for the children that was scheduled during nap time! 🙂 It seems to really shape the children’s behavior in a positive way also.

    Best wishes with your allergy issues. We’d be lost without our allergist!

  • It’s so easy to become whiny. It’s something I need to work on not doing. Thankful I have a hubby that is forgiving, but can’t allow that to excuse myself.

  • Victoria says:

    Thanks for sharing this Crystal. I was very surprised by it since you always seem to get so much done and you seem so positive all of the time. I really hope and pray that you feel better soon. I know that you and your family eat really healthy, but I highly recommend that you look into the Paleo diet.

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