My eyes opened at 3:00 am. No surprise. I went to bed early, sleepy, and tired, and earnest about being well-rested for today’s life pop-quiz; tooth extraction. lol So… I guess I’m well-rested. 🙂 I spent the extra time on a leisurely shower, yoga, meditation, and then… comedy. Humor. Laughter. Light-heartedness. Joy. Sure, why not? Got a few extra minutes? To what better use can you put it, than a few moments of merriment?

The clock ticks on. We are mortal creatures (at least for now). Grief is a thing, part of our experience as human beings. Sorrows come and go. Hurts happen, some of those become festering wounds. We rage and storm against perceived slights, and harvest personal resentments from our carefully curated personal narratives. Anger, too, is a thing that is part of our experience. It’s too easy to let the “dark side” of our emotional spectrum to take over; it’s powerful. So powerful. So… I make a point to invite in the joy, the merriment, the humor, the contentment. I let happiness wander in to join the fun, whenever possible. While I’ve given up on treating my emotions as my enemy, I recognize that some emotions are definite “party crashers”, uninvited, generally unwanted, and totally willing to just take over, and suck the fun out of life. Making a real point to seek out the positive and uplifting experiences helps a lot, by building resilience, and a more positive implicit experience.

Where to begin, though…?

It’s hard to go wrong with good basics…

I sip my coffee, contentedly. I feel okay about the tooth extraction, less anxious after doing some reading about typical experiences, after-care, and looking at x-rays online of how that particular tooth commonly fits in a human jaw. All of that helped reassure and calm me (your needs – and results – may vary). I feel ready. My time is managed to support after-care (no work tomorrow, I can stay home and take it easy), although I won’t be eating any enticing holiday foods. lol I pause for a moment of gratitude; I have a good dentist, with whom I am at ease, and was able to get a prompt appointment, the day before a holiday, simplifying the time needed for after-care. I’m fortunate.

I’m surprised, again, by how really good gratitude actually feels… 🙂 I spend a few moments happily appreciating things for which I am grateful… this can of room temperature coffee, for example, which allows me to easily and conveniently support my coffee habit even while waiting on an appointment to have a painful tooth extracted. Oh, hey, and the weird glue-y stuff the dentist used to protect the exposed stump of this tooth, until the day of my appointment, so I can eat, and rest through the night, and drink water (and, um, room temperature coffee). I’m grateful for the good night of sleep I got. Grateful for the running water and indoor plumbing. Grateful to see another sun rise. 🙂 All good stuff. I begin to feel a wholesome feeling of being uplifted – nothing going on aside from this simple exercise in gratitude. It’s nice, and also quite portable, convenient, and inexpensive. 😀

I sip my coffee, smiling, pleased to have shifted an experience fraught with anxiety to one characterized by contentment, and positivity. I glance at the clock, aware of my commitment to being in the office a bit early, since the day will be shortened by this appointment. This feels okay. It’s enough. 🙂