To Lack is a State of Mind

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For the past two winters, I survived through the season with no heat in our home. My boiler malfunctioned and eventually ceased to work. On several occasions, I attempted to get it fixed but was unsuccessful. I hired three different companies, each claiming they knew what the issue was and over a thousand dollars later, I still had no heat. 

I reside in New York, where temperatures reach freezing levels on a regular basis during the wintertime. It indeed, was a trying time for me especially with my low tolerance for cold. Each day, I’d come home and remain in my coat until I was ready to put on my house clothes (which mainly consisted of sweats and thermals). Sometimes, I’d even cook dinner with my coat on, which I wasn’t doing as often because it was so intolerable to cook in what felt like, an ‘ice box’. It was challenging when it came time to change my clothes and bear the cold on my bare skin. Shower time was brutal. The cold air was mean – so mean,  I’d skip some days. Most of my time was spent under the covers and layers of clothing. When I was forced to get up, whether it was to use the restroom, prepare something to eat or brew a pot of coffee, I moved quickly! I noticed I always felt compelled to move hastily, as if, to escape the cold, knowing there was no escaping. There were times this 40+ year old house of mine would be colder inside than it was outside.

The cold knew its way and dug itself into my bones. It caused me pain and discomfort. At times, it was overwhelming but soon I came to see within these exact moments, there were so many others less fortunate than me. There were many blessings that existed in my life even without heat on that list. I thought how blessed I am to even have a home, to have a bed, to have quilts, to have a shower with warm running water, to have food within arm’s reach and to eventually be blessed with space heaters. The moment I changed my mindset and shifted my perspective, life became grand again. I recollected to keep focus on my blessings and to remember this would only be temporary. The bottom line was this ↪ I was cold but I had enough resources to keep myself warmed. That was the blessing!

I am grateful for the lessons. A broken boiler caused me discomfort but it taught me about patience. My loved ones and I experienced extreme temps in our home but we learned the effectiveness of body heat. The cold traveled and my bones ached but eventually, it reminded me of my humanness and how blessed I am to be alive and feeling. 

Today, my boiler is working and the thermostat is set. The radiators are hissing and heat fills my space. My bedroom is warm and so is every other room in the house. I have a huge appreciation for this heat and a mindfulness that every situation or challenge we may face is here to help us grow spiritually and/or mentally. Lesson: to lack, is simply a state of mind.  

I am blessed. I am grateful. I am warm.

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