I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are now ready to brave the next holiday season… Christmas. More about that subject later. Today, I‘d like to talk about some of the things I’m grateful for. Like most of you, this has been a financially challenging year, with a lot of changes, some more welcome than others, so it’s been easy to get a overwhelmed by all those problems and difficulties.
In order to keep my balance, and my sanity, I decided to start paying attention to the many good little things that happen in my life every day. The things I don’t often consider, but that make my life a little bit brighter.
Gift 1 – No snow. I’m not a big fan of snow. I don’t mind it up in the mountains, or hanging artistically in the bare branches of the trees, but I cannot stand it underfoot. I hate to drive on it, I hate to walk on it and I don’t really like to shovel it. I prefer to visit it on special occasions, and then return home without the threat of slush or black ice. So far this year the snow has been very considerate and stayed off the sidewalks and streets . I’m grateful that we are still snow free.
Gift 2 – Do you ever wish you could thank the person in the next car that lets you move into a crowded lane or pass into the street from the grocery store parking lot during rush hour? The one who doesn’t honk, even when the light turned green 2 seconds before and you haven’t hit your accelerator pedal yet. I love those drivers who don’t feel the need to ride up my tail pipe on the freeway if I don’t change lanes as quickly as they might wish, or who manage to avoid an accident, even when it’s me that’s made the mistake. To all considerate and kind drivers on the road, I’m very grateful to you.
Gift 3 – A baby’s smile. I don’t believe there is anything that can make me feel more important and of more value than when I’m standing in the checkout line at the grocery store, and a little one in the cart ahead looks up, meets my eyes and offers a huge toothless grin. It’s like somehow I was chosen from among all the other shoppers to receive that angelic manifestation, or that the innocence of youth saw something in me worthy of joy. So to all the sweet and happy young children that smile at strangers, I’m grateful to you.
Gift 4 – Everyday there is something that goes my way, some bit of luck or chance of timing that makes my world go a little smoother. Hitting all green lights on my way to work, getting the last discount blouse in my size on the shopping rack, enjoying a full night sleep with a really sensational dream, or stepping out my front door just in time to see the most spectacular sunset ever. I am grateful for all those little, almost meaningless moments that mean so much to me.
Because Christmas is now on its way, bringing the temptation to get lost in the stress and guilt of creating the perfect holiday with less and less resources every year, I think it’s important to keep our eyes open for those exceptional instants that happen every day. I’m trying to keep that attitude of gratitude going through the next month and into the New Year.
What are you thankful for?