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Confessions of a gratitude junky

“It’s the stories we tell ourselves that cause all the problems. If you look reality straight in the eye, you end up a lot less confused.”—Nell Zink

So I gave myself an incredible gift over the holidays. It did not feel like a gift at the time. But it so powerfully reinforced everything I believe that I’m hoping I shan’t (wow! Where did that word come from?) dig it up again.

For whatever reason, I decided to pull out one of my old, treasured stories.  It’s an Oscar-worthy tale with lots of drama, plenty of pathos and my body knows exactly what to do with it, starting with manufacturing and dumping an assortment of stress chemicals.

I put everything I had into this oh-so familiar pity party. And sure enough, it demonstrated, once again, the power of thoughts and beliefs. Life itself is stunningly beautiful—except when we put ourselves in the prisons of certain stories and beliefs. Our stories do indeed create worlds.

So here is my thankfully short-lived holiday tale. Instead of celebrating and reveling in all the wonderful holiday memories I have with my beautiful daughter, I decided to pout about the unfairness of the fact she’s no longer here. I put all my energy into the story that this was my fifth Christmas without my favorite person in the whole wide world. You can imagine the result.

I was grumpy to my partner. I was withdrawn at his family’s Christmas Eve feast. In other words, I suffered because I fed a thought that doesn’t look reality straight in the eye. I know good and well Taz isn’t really “gone.” Heck, I still talk to her every day. I feel her presence around me. I consider myself incredibly lucky to have spent 25 years of my life with her Divine being, right here in the material world.

The old story is compelling. As sad stories go, it gets five stars. Unless you live in Ukraine or say, Somalia, it’s hard to find a tale that garners more sympathy.  But why choose to forfeit right here, right now with a belief that causes suffering.

I know people will say, “but you have the right to your emotions!” and, yes, I believe I do. But I also believe I deserve happiness and that I can curate which stories I choose to water and grow in my consciousness.  

I’m grateful for this experience that offered more proof that we do indeed create our reality. And I remain committed to life that’s happening right now in this beautiful, never-to-be repeated moment. #222 Forever!

Pam Grout is the author of 20 books including E-Squared, E-Cubed, Thank & Grow Rich and her latest, The Course in Miracles Experiment: A Starter Kit for Rewiring Your Mind (And Therefore Your World).

49 Responses

  1. Big hugs to you. I love your writing. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Happy New Year ❤️

  2. Again, Pam, I so appreciate your transparency because I often marvel at my own ability to host a pity party even though I know better. Sometimes we pedal backwards and that’s what usually propels us forward again. Love to you and Taz for how you have changed my life! 💓

    1. Absolutely agree, it’s easy to go down the pity path even though we know better that’s me included, and Pam is a fine example of how to turn it around and feel gratitude for everything x

  3. Love you 💕Pam, sending love and hugs.
    Your wisdom and enlightenment truly makes my life a more positive path. Thank you!

  4. Dear Pam,

    First and foremost: I love YOU; through your “person” has come some of the most inspiring content that could ever be–work that helps Beings reach for a much greater quality of apparent life circumstances.
    Second (maybe this will help the next time the imposter attempts to grab YOU by the collar): What is the nature of the “i” that might have been missing “her” daughter?

    I use this practice to kick out the imposter “i” that tries to tell “me” that I’m lonely; when in, fact, my children, my ex, and everyone else is within my true Self.

    Deep gratitude to you, Pam. Your books have helped lift me and give me hope, when I still thought of myself as “Art.” 🙏🏿🧡

  5. Pam, it seems to me that you would be inhuman to not have sorrow visit, especially around the holidays. May you get a fabulous communication from Taz pronto! Hear that, Taz? Send your mother a love note, do it today! Meanwhile, may peace and healing settle on our planet, including our favorite author in Kansas.

  6. Thank you, Pam, for your honesty, for your courage, and for once again showing us that our love is more powerful than our fear and our grief. How lucky were you to have a daughter like Taz, and for her to have you as her mother?! Incredibly awesome!!

  7. I know Pam, I can feel it when you talk of Taz, but how fortunate you are to have chosen a different perspective. One that empowers you and fills you with gratitude, and that’s how Taz would have wanted it.

    I do resonate with those emotions, as I have an adult son who lives with me and has mental illness, we’ve come a long way this year with so many challenges, but I always feel thankful and happy that he’s slowly progressing.

    Thank you for your inspiration.

    Love Loraine x

  8. Hey! Surrendering to the pity party FOR A WHILE is not only natural, but also healthy.
    But realizing it and pulling yourself back into the gratitude party is one of your super powers.
    I think there will always be some of both.
    And knowing you, as the years pass by, you will be constantly dancing more and more toward
    the gratitude party (with Taz by your side, every step of the way!).

  9. Any parent can resonate with your well justified “pity party”. But I can’t tell you how much it means to me that you have chosen to walk the talk of your belief in the “more” of this existence. Listening to your books, reading your blog posts, or just remembering something you’ve said helps me when I’m in my own rabbit hole of loss and unfairness. Thank you for your example of the beauty and transcendence of this physical experience.

  10. Thank you, than you. Such an awesome reminder to always look on the positive side and our blessings. I am so grateful to have you in my life.

  11. You are so wise and so knowing. I know Taz is with your forever your souls are merged but moving through this phase without her feels so lonely. You who have held so many of us live and hope and been are glue, deserve our understanding and awe over your magic.
    Love light and a better New Year for us all thanks to you Pam

  12. I wasn’t expecting to read what your Confessions of a Gratitute Junky title implied. It hit me like a ton of led. You’ve written To me before about my 24-year-old son’s sudden passing in August. But I did okay at Christmas this year with a house full of friends and family. I’m glad you recognize it’s our choice to focus on the now or the past or future. I’m still working to honor my son’s life, my grieving process, and live in the present, too.

  13. Thank you for sharing this “Christmas story” of yours with us Pam. Even though I’m sorry you experienced this, I’m glad you’ve shared it with us because it demonstrates that even the wisest, happiest most positive people, like yourself, still have bad days from time to time and still “forget” the truths that give us hope, comfort and joy. I hope that you can joyfully celebrate the New Year in a few days, knowing that Taz is going to bring you amazing gifts, synchronicities, signs and delights from her “home” to yours that will boggle your mind. I hope, too, that you give yourself a few moments to grieve the loss of your beautiful daughter’s physical presence in your life so that you can then embrace the wonder of having her spiritual presence with you, no matter where either of you may be. Here’s to the many joyful, celebratory, mischievous and miraculous moments ahead for you Pam, and for us all, in 2023. May we each find a way to be “Gratitude Junkies” on a daily basis no matter what! 💃☀️🦋☔️💛🎈

  14. Your short story is definitely a short one!!!
    It is my modest opinion taht you are not “on target” at this time, maybe because Christmas has specific experiences and stories showing off.
    You speak about “unfairness”, and I think this is part of the problem: Is the Universe responsible of things that seem to us unfair for us to suffer, or is there a hidden road to go ?

    I would suggest you some reading that was really the “switch” when I was to face an unthinkable and traumatic experience in my life. There is no life saver, but there are some lanterns that help find the road I mention above.

    With my best regards

    Carlos Morató

  15. Dear dear Pam,

    Thank You for this post. I have also witnessed the power of our stories and our insider Who is never, I say never, nothing More that babbling away. So grateful that I’ve learned to let that narrator just be.

    We went to the sauna today, my kids and I, and my Youngest asked ”If You could have a superpower, What Would it be?” Of course my oldest replied instantly “Teleportation” 😅😅😅
    I had to give it a moment, and my son began to suggest “like is it hugs or smiling..” (so grateful for those suggestions 💝💝)
    But then I went what if course it’s all about 💝💫💝
    And the best part, as my daughter told that with Love as a superpower I can make everyone love each other. Aaaand since ultimately we are all one, and big Oneness, practically that boils down to that there is only Love left 🦋💫🦋😍🤩😍

    With Pure Love, Teija and the Pelonteet.

    Ps. I understand it intellectually that when my sister left this earthly life experience in which we are now, she’s now more present to me than ever, in countless shapes and forms and so on. But to grasp it on a conscious level, to Be conscious about that reality… well, I think I might be on my way there 🦋💫🦋💫🦋💫🦋

  16. The heart and the mind are universes apart in comprehending life’s sorrows and tragedies. Allow the grief to rain out of your heart to honor the depth of your love for your daughter. To stifle that grief will bring dis-ease to the body- mind – spirit. It’s impossible to intellectualize grief or the waves of pain and sorrow that come and go that aren’t in our control. It’s the heart ♥️ finding expression. Allow the sorrow to manifest and release and give that sorrow to the heavens , to your glorious daughter and give yourself the space to be Her Mother Grieving. Yes she is with you and yes she will always be with you but allow your human self to express all you feel. As your father would attest and affirm and confirm – they are all together and keep your faith all the while until it’s your time to join your heavenly family. Life and love are everlasting . Release, bless, cry, regroup, repeat. And know Taz is next to you even as I type this to you. Blessings dear Pam, blessings .

  17. Such a beautiful story. I have the same pity party every March (Vanessa’s birthay month) and every December (Vanessa’s passing month). My daughter is in heaven today, 12/28/2022 31 years. I have been struggling more now due to another event.

  18. Thank you Pam for sharing your deepest personal experiences for the purpose of helping us to understand and end our unconscious sufferings. And of course it can take a while for us to come into the light of consciousness before we remember that reality is now, not the stories of the past we brought to the present. So it’s okay if we slid down the road of unconsciousness where our sorrows live, until we remember again. Bless you for all you have given us.

  19. But don´t we need to have pity parties sometimes? Isn´t it healthy to just let the pain come out? You have experienced a deep loss. It is OK to be sad. I have found that when Grief hits, there is nothing much you can do but surrender to it. To just let it do its business. To have some tea with it, like the Buddha did with the demon Mara that kept harrassing him. You are indeed entitled to happiness, but surrendering to grief doesn´t take happiness away, I have found. It somehow makes happiness more profound. In moments of pain you become more aware of how beautiful life is. Blessings to you Pam and a very happy year 2023.

  20. I’d never heard of you before this year. My daughter-in-law suggested I read E2. I loved it. I loved the humor. I then read 2 more of your books. Shortly after that I saw an interview you were doing on Inspire Nation. Somewhere near the end of the interview you mentioned your late daughter. This literally stopped me in my tracks. You see, I lost my 44 year old daughter in June of 2020. I felt hopeful to see someone who had also lost a child going about their business and living life. I also kept hearing references to ACIM from you and elsewhere. What the heck is that?? So I looked into it and I am now on day 95. Your story and writings have helped me and I’m sure many others. I still have those times when my people suffer from my grumpiness but I catch myself now. Gratitude is a powerful thing and a great healer. So, I’m grateful for the 44 years I had with my daughter and I’m grateful for 2022. I learned SO much and I found Pam Grout!!!!

  21. Thanks so much for sharing what I think we all go through in different ways – makes me more determined when my next invitation pops up to the pity party to say no thanks I will give it a miss – been there – definitely didn’t like it and immediately give thanks for anything and everything and start a happy now party

  22. Dear Pam
    You once noted , you took over the baton from Wayne.
    His children whom he loved, are dealing with his passing as well. Life being a story one tells the self, I tell myself the next chapter I am 70, will be fucken amazing.
    In a non woo is me attitude. I go thru my daily agitations, but I can short circuit them.
    Ultimately as Wayne said, We can control our thoughts.
    It does take 10,0000 of hours , but we can control our thinking.
    I will wrestle you for the baton, please do call me if you are ever in Toronto. I have Wayne’s first cassettes when he was very funny.

    Toronto, Ontario Canada
    Your friendly neighbour to the north.

  23. I know good and well Taz isn’t really “gone.” Heck, I still talk to her every day. I feel her presence around me. I consider myself incredibly lucky to have spent 25 years of my life with her Divine being, right here in the material world. (I’m so happy that you have that wonderful connection with Taz. It was always there but you were grieving too much to feel it.). I continue to love your posts. This Christmas was a very difficult one for me…so maybe there was something going on in the cosmos which had us thrown off guard. The love is always with us…but sometimes we let the dark take over and can’t feel or see the love. Thank you for your wonderful posts.

  24. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story, a welcome reminder. I too believe our thoughts create our reality, and yet, I can lead myself down some unnecessary, dark rabbit holes. I’m currently nursing a horrible cold that I know is the result of lost sleep from worrying about an upcoming holiday celebration that I also know will turn out exactly as it is supposed to be. When will I learn?
    Again, thank you.

  25. Sending love and hugs from the Multiverse. From Taz and Jim and Skye and Wink and Dottie and Ruth and John and Joshua and Elizabeth and Hildigard and Rich and Glynnis and Annie and Milton and Sara Lee and Joan and Mary and …..

  26. Thank you Pam. Your words always lift me up. I’m in awe of how you use your life to show us the way. Your words are such a contrast to the life I see and hear around me and I appreciate being able to have them all in my life, and to consider how this all works.

  27. Beautiful!! I think everyone could benefit from reading these words of wisdom. Thank you❤️❤️

  28. Mahalo for sharing. I recently listened to a track on Insight Timer that speaks well to this experience. It’s called ‘Letter to My Mind’ by Devin McCrorey. It’s 5 minutes long – incredibly powerful, as your words are as well.

  29. 🙏 Thank you for your honesty, insights and sharing.
    Love ❤️ you ❤️
    . Taz has you😇
    As I know you already know.
    Just nice to hear sometimes 🤗

  30. Bless you, dear Pam
    Thank you so much for reminding me that I do have a choice. No matter what’s going on around me right now (family-wise), I am the thinker of my thought and I have the right to choose.
    May you have the happiest and very best New Year!

  31. Pam, you are a bad-ass! Once we learn that how we feel is a choice, we can’t stay long in those stories. Although I don’t always choose wisely, I am very much aware that it is a choice and very much aware of what the outcome of my decisions will be. You are my hero!

  32. Thanks for sharing this. I love the idea that we have the power to shape our life experiences by the way we narrate them. And here you’re showing us that it takes practice to narrate in a way that benefits us most. Life seems designed to give us plenty opportunities for such practice.

  33. I am so grateful for your emails. I just wanted to say thanks and send you lots of love xxx

  34. Loved this reminder!!! Thank you Pam, for keeping it real and helping us all keep it real. I’m so happy that’s I’ve “met” you as a writer at this stage of my life as our memories do indeed cause the stories that we can dwell upon and recreate over and over unless we become conscious and realise who we really are ❤️

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