#HospitalHack 2 – Pollyanna Positivity Principle

Doing the cancer walk with your child is not all roses.. It’s tough! It’s hard to stay positive and look at the upside. As per a previous post, attitude is transferable, if you’re feeling one way, your child picks up on that and runs with it too. So in this Hospital Hack I share how I (try to) stay positive.

While in hospital we’ve watch a lot of movies, it’s a great way to pass time with your little one. Anyhow while watching the 1960 classic Pollyanna something struck me as a good thing to do, The Glad Game. It’s as simple as finding something to be glad about, no matter what the circumstances. Pollyanna plays this game when everyone is whinging about it being Sunday, she says she’s glad it’s another 6 full days until it’s Sunday again.

Another movie we’ve watched together is Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day. My favourite quote in that movie is “You gotta have bad days so you love the good days even more

In Michael Crossland’s book Kids Don’t Get Cancer has a similar concept where a kid taught him that “It could be worse” where he looks at what could be worse.

Finding a positive has to be a universal truth, the preacher in Pollyanna says there are 820+ “glad” verses in the bible. I’m not about to go and check, but the one verse that comes to mind is 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.

Update 14 May: It’s amazing how some things just keep appearing. The JW’s came to our door this morning and the Awake magazine they handed out has a great article on postitive attitudes. I think they’ve encapulated some good ideas on why it’s a good idea to keep positive.

Update April 2017: I didn’t realise the Pollyanna Principle was actually a “thing” (also called Pollyannaism or positivity bias), slightly different than what I’m talking about, but Wikipedia has more detail.

Watch what you say

Yesterday was tough, but a good slap across my face too. It was after my first night back at hospital after being sick for a few days and I was over it, wanting to get home ASAP. I told Colleen the same on the phone and Violet was listening. Violets’ attitude changed after that, she wanted to go home and was grumpy and over it!

It was a massive reality hit, how must my daughter really feel? She has been in these 4 walls for 13 days and still has at least another week to go with her BMT. At least I get to go home every other day. This isn’t about me, I need to HTFU, step up and be there for my wife and family. I also need to watch what I say and do in front of my kids. It’s easier said than done and really hard when you’ve been sick and tired.

That was yesterday, a day to learn hard lessons that I’d previously learnt but forgotten. Today is a new day, a day to appreciate what I have, lift myself and my family up. Look up. Believe. Love. Know God is there.