Gratitude. As strange as it might seem, that is the one prevailing emotion of the past six weeks.

Why gratitude?  I’ve been in the hospital.  I’ve been sick.  Really sick. Several weeks on life support when I was too weak to breathe on my own.  So though there’s been moments of fear, of anger, of bitterness, of longing, of frustration, when I think about what has really filled my heart throughout this ordeal it is gratitude.  This experience has left me so so so grateful for my life!

My family has been amazing.  They’ve been here nearly every single day to make sure things went right and to be my support and my company.  To hold my hand and to just let me know they love me.

My friends… I can’t even think about how hugely the’ve been here for me without getting teary eyed.  They’ve sent cards and gifts. And most importantly they’ve showed up and entertained during these long dark weeks.  My friends make me feel so loved.  I don’t know how I’m so deserving, but I try to be better everyday to deserve how well my friends treat me.

My Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ.  Without them I would be so lost.  They give me the strength to endure these tough times.  And I am grateful for these hard times as the polish me into the person my Father in Heaven would have me be.

My self expression. I’ve spent most of the past six weeks a complete mute.  Communicating by writing notes either on paper or one my laptop since it’s rather hard to talk with a breathing tube down your throat.  But last night I got a special valve to put on my tracheotomy that allows me to start to speak again.

About Lauren

Lauren believes that life can be full of joy and gratitude especially in the face of life's toughest trials. A highly creative person, the 32-year-old has a background in web & graphic design, musical theater, competitive improvisation, film production, and Alternate Reality Games. She is passionate about creative writing and is working on the final drafts of two science fiction novels. As a graduate of Landmark Education she has developed herself personally and professionally allowing her to powerfully create the life that she wants. After being diagnosed with multiple autoimmune diseases including Myasthenia Gravis and Sjogren's Syndrome, she adapted to new limitations while also discovering new interests and creative outlets that have given her life renewed purpose. Although she was raised Jewish, she converted to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Her faith helped her to endure and even flourish.