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The Wing of Gratitude

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Expression, Education, Advocacy

About and/or by People With
Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (CFS / CFIDS / M.E.)
Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FM / FMS)
MVPS/D and Similar Syndromes

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Marvels by Mindy

well here I am again.

back home
on my couch
in pain
full of frustrated desires,


i am here, with longing, but different.

i am here, in pain, exhausted, full of frustrated desires
filled with gratitude.
gratitude for
reminiscences of many joy-filled moments
socializing, doing, resting,
nurturing, enriching, creating.

gratitude for
lessons learned again and again and anew
aid increasing
mindfulness,  acceptance, informed choice

awe for the wisdom of the body
that coaxes, insists,
on its due.

awe for the expansive nature of the mind
that learns and grows beyond its own
capacity to imagine.

awe for the grace of the spirit
that faithfully, patiently awaits
free will opening to embrace its gifts.

here I am again
but different.
understanding and beginning to embody
patience, awe and joy.


As Is

I'm grateful for when things can be As Is.

Grateful for times I'm confident enough to go out with my hair As Is.

Grateful for leaving the kitchen As Is.

Grateful for the neighbors' yard, which is definitely As Is
       and therefore full of colorful, tiny flowers.

Grateful for bedtime when the day gets wrapped up As Is.

Sarah Turner
May 2, 2013

Gems by Jewels and Sun


I'd rather know this place of new faith than stay in the faithless place.
I'd rather know myself like this than not know myself like that.
I'd rather lay in bed touching divine rather than running a mile.
I'd rather know the depth of this spirit I now own, rather than go back to the place where I fought in a different way to reach my existence.
I'd rather seek, than hide.
I'd rather levitate my soul in mysticism than enter the spiral of there is nothing more than this sickness.
I'd rather lift my spirits rather than lifting a shovel to my grave.
I'd rather hear my son tell me he needs a hug because it helps him too, rather than be at work where that hug might have been missed.
I'd rather accept this contract of fatigue rather than fight with all the might I have left.
I'd rather be here than over there, where I might not know who she is, and she is me.
I'd rather feel this heart palpitating rather than feeling nothing at all.
I'd rather follow this path than see no path at all.
I'd rather accept the fullness of what is than accept the incompletetion of my soul.
I'd rather keep writing than forget my purpose of my "be."
rather interesting to me...what just rolled out as I began "rathering"

Jewels, October 13, 2010


It is when I reach the end of my capacity that I know more of the infinite capacity to heal.

At the end of our capacity, our knowledge expands.

They acknowledge the shared profoundness together.

October 2010

gratefulness and healing

grateful "being grateful" has no negative effect on my body, it continuously brings growth of my healing.

grateful "being grateful" is easier than taking a new new medication and having a reaction, and that it's ok for both to occur simultaneously.

grateful "being grateful" opens doors instead of closing them.

grateful "being grateful" is an additive I can handle.

grateful "being grateful" brings the preservatives that give me the preservation I need.

grateful "being grateful" is there in the valleys, in the mountains, in the desert, in the sun, in the rain, in the snow, in the leaves, in the stream.

grateful "being grateful" helps my inner and outer become one.

grateful "being grateful" is a default, one of the best defaults to have ever helped me during suffering.

grateful "being grateful" gives survival to all that feels unsurvivable.

grateful "being grateful" helps me surrender, sometimes dying, for it helps me see the reason to be reborn opening my eyes for the first time again to see there truly is a plan, a God, a Great Spirit that guides me, bringing me closer to Heaven on Earth.

grateful "being grateful" is an attachment rather than a detachment.

grateful "being grateful" does not have all the answers, it simply gives me the space to ask the questions.

grateful "being grateful" truly pulls me out of that stuck in cement, can't possibly move, paralyzed feeling.

grateful "being grateful" is something I know exists, even when I am in the fog, the clouds.

grateful to see how the years of "being grateful" works, and it is one thing I do not have to question for I have that answer.

Jewels, September 26, 2010

Nina's Fall Walk to The Lake

Several years ago, a very good friend of mine who is the leader of the
N. VA CFIDS support group [suggested] I keep a gratitude journal.
I was in a particularly bad place, and crying a lot, so for THREE months,
I wrote 5x/day "I'm grateful for kleenex."

It finally began to "take" inside of me,
and I think it has played a major part in my healing.

When I first got [to my new home], I couldn't walk the 4 blks to the lake,
but once I could........ "Walk to the Lake"
(see below, a painted tissue paper collage)

Today, a church near me was holding services in one of the parks
between me and the lake.  As I walked toward them,
the sun was glittering on the water like diamonds,
and the music was beautiful. Then, they started a prayer thanking God
as I walked past them, and I said to myself "Amen!"
I always say "thank you"when I"m down there.
xoxo, Nina Bunin, 2010

"Fall Walk To The Lake" by Nina, a tissue paper collage

Accepting Grace
Barbara Bell

We can only accept grace into ourselves when we are ready,
and we can only be ready when we've accumulated the wisdom to recognize it.

It may have been there all along, quiescent,
but we may not recognize it until we know its face.

Like when we learn a new language, we have to accumulate a basic vocabulary
before we can start to speak it and understand it when it is spoken to us. 

We can only experience grace about tragedy
after we have spent time with the suffering,
learned its vocabulary,
understood what it had to say,
and assimilated its meaning into our experience of our world.

September 6, 2010

Toni's "Remembering to Breathe"

Just saw a tv character resist a needle prick. She made
that face one makes when it hurts for a second, the intake of breath so fast in reaction to a rapidly passing hurt.

I told the character on tv, "Breathe." Makes the pain less.

But, too late, and, it's tv and fiction and she wasn't actually being pricked by a needle but acting like she
was ...

I forget where I learned about breathing in anticipation
of pain. I'm grateful to have learned. I also remember, gratefully, breathe in upon exertion of body in exercise and breathe out upon relaxing again.

I remember being at my mother's side when she screamed in pain whenever the nurses touched her. Every touch caused her pain at that point, no matter what was necessary for the nurses to do for her.

I leaned in close to my mother's ear saying, breathe, mommy, breathe, so it won't hurt so much.

Yet, I find myself holding my breath often for no easily seen reason while resting in my recliner.

What thought strode through my mind at the moment I held my breath? I don't usually know.

But I'm grateful to remember I may have had an anticipation of pain when I catch myself not breathing, telling myself again, just breathe. It will hurt less.

August 19, 2010

"Meeting Louiee"
Barbara Bell

Louie the Little Horse in a Coat
 I had the privilege
 of meeting Louiee.

 A fine equine.

 Speaks volumes without  saying a word.

Louiee modeling
my jacket.

I'm grateful to him for reminding me... I have the tools available to protect myself
when I feel exposed and vulnerable to the elements of life. I may have to get creative in deciding which tools are right for which situation, and learn from experience when my choices don't provide an adequate buffer. And learn about which types of weather it's okay to experience. That I might not actually melt in the rains of grief, be carried away in the cyclone of symptoms never to be seen again, turn to dust during the long drought of loneliness, or crack and shatter after the dark and miserable winter of lost dreams. And the crevasse of despair that widens with each little earthquake in my heart may not be bottomless. If history is any indication, I'll survive when the next sudden storm comes and I don't feel prepared.
And maybe I'll become more comfortable with being vulnerable.

Yes, Louiee's silences are as golden as his fine fur.

- TurtleBarb, March 2010

Grateful Sand Art

"Thank YOU For"

Thank You for:

giving us voice that
we be heard, and feel alive,
providing connection,  melt isolation.
That we be not deprived.

Standing beside us
in silence, in action,
in pain and celebration
on good and bad days,
in learning new ways.

Sharing much knowledge
ammunition that opened doors,
to quiet our inner wars
expand our learning core.

Providing a forum
to comfort the forlorn
Quieting Fears and
shedding our tears.

making us stronger
each to move onward,
forging new friendships
share hopeful glimpses.

enlisting understanding
beyond measured years,
your own ills unyielding
you opened your ears.

listening unending
to each of our cries
collective and private
ours never deprived.

Your courage and foresight
to bring us these tools,
your time and your passion
your own golden rule

but most of all thank you
for giving the gift
the pleasure to know you
your love and your whit.

for spending your time
with each and with all
we thank you dear elly
from you did we draw.

- Sand Art

El's Elaborations

To Quicken in the EGG

The attitude of gratitude,
sounds full of platitude.
I don't yet have words,
will you give me more latitude?

I said in my mind a whole bunch of should,
I suppressed my true spirit with 'If only god would..."
I didn't feel good enough, 'If I only could...,'
came out of my body as 'I just don't feel good'.

All the king's horses and all the king's men,
failed the big egg, his fall was not zen.
My fall was in spirit, then mind, and then flesh,
after CFS, after POTS, after all, I rise afresh.

I have time to heal all, time to reverse it,
and reach up to remember what's real and what's shit.
My spirit is now leading, the mind next in line,
the body in rear, I trust will be fine.

I've formed a good EGG to help those with walls,
whether they sit on them like Humpty or build them with galls.
We'll notice what's flowing, Dumpty the old style,
start feeling better and really worthwhile.

I cannot heal faster, it isn't I'm chicken.
I must walk for now while still a bit stricken.
My vitality is growing, my plot is still thickening,
I lead the new EGG for my ultimate quickening.

Elly Brosius

Resistance is Assistance

has been my

Thank You

Your Will Nor
Your Surrender
Could Melt it Away

I needed it

Your Resistance, My Resistance
With Frustration's tenacious Persistence
Marks time 'til the Time for Each to Live in Co-Existence
'Til the Time for Each to Live Insistence on Timeless Existence

You as You Are
for me
I am as I am
for you


Elly Brosius

Just after 7:22 PM EST, December 21, 2006
The Winter Solstice, when The Light grows again

Something Was OK Today

That very long list of
what was hard and
what went wrong
that repeats in the head...
that is what
depletes a heart

When overwhelmed
when overtired
when wrung out
and feeling dead....
it is vital
for vitality
begin anew, to start

Balancing the list
believing in benefits
of finding and noting
to self, maybe others
Something was OK
maybe even beautiful
maybe even art

Elly Brosius

For Elly's "Over Do Ode" and "A is for Appreciation"
see Expressions page at When Pushing Stops Working

Got art?
Email us.... it might end up in this space, currently and intentionally left blank...

The Northern VA CFS/ME, FMS, & OI Support Group & CFSupport are informal support groups and website led by volunteers. Group leaders Elly and Toni have the experience of chronic illness and are not medical, counseling, or legal professionals. Please seek out qualified physicians and other Practitioners for
diagnosis,  treatment, and legal advice. Thank you.

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Updated May 12, 2013