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This past Saturday, I stood in the cool green grass and took pictures of my daughter and her prom date. She looked beautiful. It was an ordinary moment in a not-so-ordinary life. It was a mother-daughter moment that I do not get very often, a moment when I could see through the mist of rejection and discouragement to hope and joy.

This same daughter has visited the emergency room and psych ward several times for mental health crises and self-harm. She also has an attachment disorder, and for those of you who do not understand, kids with attachment disorders often reject the nurturing caregiver, the mom.

I almost missed the moment. I texted Carrie and Sara a picture. They reminded me to savor and enjoy this moment and celebrate. It was a little bit of joy, and I noticed it and marked it- We must choose to live by hope even when hope is hard.

I have been thinking about this moment for a few days. days. Thanks to the encouragement from my friends, I was able to be open to joy. I was able to expand. I must admit that I often do the opposite; I contract and seek protection or control. Contraction is the opposite of being open or expanding. Although it makes us feel like it gives us focus, direction, security, and protection, we cannot stay here.

Expansiveness accepts whatever comes and leaves us open to those moments of joy. A mentor told me that joy heals control. I like to be in control, don’t you? I want to be ready when the next crisis happens. But I would have missed the joy if I had been focused on the next problem. I can say with certainty we will have another crisis, but I won’t have that Saturday night back. I am so glad my wise friends reminded me to enjoy it.

No matter where you are today, where can you choose to be open or expand to the beauty in front of you?

Even amid a new diagnosis, battling with the insurance company, or sitting by a hospital bed?

Where can you let joy expand and overtake you, even for a few minutes?

I encourage you to celebrate and savor one small moment today.​

I would love to hear how you are expanding, reply to this email and let me know. I would also love to support you in your journey. Schedule a time to chat with me here.

Authored By:

Amy J. Brown

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