“When Grateful Is the Hardest Word”

Lynn O'Dowd GoGaGa News

“All that I am, all that I see
All that I’ve been and all that I’ll ever be
Is a blessing, It’s so amazing
And I’m grateful for it all!”

–Grateful, Nimo

The common theme of November is “Be grateful” Yah, yah I’ve heard it a thousand times: be grateful, even for the little things in life. How can I be grateful for all the stress in my life? How can I feel grateful for being crazy busy with demands that just keep mounting? How could I be grateful for watching loved ones battle health issues? And how could I possibly feel grateful for the stroke I had 2 years ago that knocked me flat on my back?

A major artery in the back of my neck ruptured. A blood clot formed and lodged in my brain which cause me to have a stroke. One minute I was fine, the next minute I was down for the count. The stroke was causing me to retch my guts up while the room was spinning round and round. I thought I had food poisoning from eating gas station cheese curds the day before in Door County – ha, I wish! Stroke can take away your ability to do simple physical everyday things and that’s what happened to me.

Fast forward 2 years – I have my functionality back (except I can no longer ride roller coasters or stand on my head in yoga!). All thanks to the loving family, friends, and professionals who supported, helped, coached and surrounded me during the difficult years of rehab. During that process I became grateful for the “little things,” little triumphs such as walking in a straight line, being able to reach for a glass on a top shelf or putting on my shoes without falling over – everyday things I took for granted that used to be mindless.

Thankfulness also came by way of seeing all the folks around me who were using their personal and professional talents and gifts to help heal me physically and emotionally, whether through compassionate conversations, expert medical/physical therapy sessions or simply a “you can do this.” It all contributed to my healing process.

I came to realize that the stroke was a huge blessing in my life. It shifted my priorities. Instead of stressing about unread emails, I’m thankful to be able to walk my dogs, play my guitar, laugh with loved ones. Interestingly, I’m now grateful for being stressed and busy – that means I’m participating fully in life. I’m grateful to be able to help others during health challenges (like they did for me).

The stroke woke me up to appreciate the present moment and what I’m blessed with right now, to stop and smell the roses and brewing coffee, literally. You see I lost my sense of smell about 10 years ago, and the moment I had the stroke, it came back. The doctors don’t know why, other than telling me there is so much they still do not know about the brain.

In this month of thankfulness, don’t wait to be thankful for 
“the blessings that exist
The small things that are bliss
The gift to realize that
Everything is a gift

Take a listen: https://bit.ly/2NNXKuR

About Lynn
After not singing for 35 years – in a moment of madness – I answered an ad to be a singer in a Rock’n’Roll band… and got the gig. I share my story about how stepping out of my comfort zone and getting a little outrageous has changed my life.

I want everyone I reach to experience the same transformation through the “GoGaGaTM” process I’ve developed to help attendees Unleash their “Inner Superstar” and realize that it’s never too late to bust through their fears to perform at levels they never thought possible. My talk takes people from “I can’t” to “I can” in 45 to 60 minutes – with my special brand of entertainment with a message. Click here to download my speaker one-sheet, and book me for your next event.