Every year around November, turkeys begin to appear everywhere while people begin to ask, “What are thankful for?” Often my glib response (or what I hope is glib) is about being alive. Well yes, being alive is definitely something to be thankful for, but I realized recently just how much I have to be thankful for and how little gratitude I show.
Springtime (or Summertime here in Chapel Hill) has brought out in me a thankful attitude as I’ve realized what I have. Let’s start with the garden. I have a blooming, bursting, bountiful, beautiful retreat from the world right behind my apartment. I mean, I’m thankful that everything grew to start with, but I’m also pretty grateful that my boyfriend Ben did all of the heavy lifting and planting. Suddenly, feeling grateful seems to make the garden that much more enjoyable! I mean…the raspberries certainly help though.
So, I started realizing how little I had to complain about…and then, reality: there is ALWAYS something to complain about–especially at work. Besides, ranting and raving a little bit always serves to make me feel better. But at the end of that, I realize just how glad I am to have a job. More than that, I’m glad to have a job that I truly enjoy. How many people can say that? And regardless of how many people can say it, I can go home at the end of the day being happy because I feel fulfilled.
Have I mentioned how glad I am that I got a cat? Well, I am ecstatic. When we got her, I was afraid that Pippa was going to end up shy and reclusive. Low and behold, she has become my little shadow as she follows me around the house mew-ing at my heels while she isn’t playing with Ben. SCORE! She is the world’s coolest cat.
May I also add how happy I am that Ben and I are continuing in a productive relationship? I think it’s fantastic that both of us are working on our issues as well as staying in touch about them. I think it hit me the other day just how wonderful things have been of late… and I hope they only get better.
More than anything, I am thankful to feel a sense of purpose in life. This has to be one of the most important aspects of any life according to Victor Frankl (Holocaust survivor and author of Man’s Search for Meaning). I must say that I agree with him wholeheartedly. So, I am grateful for finding meaning and I hope I continue to enjoy and define it.
I guess I started thinking about this whole thankfulness thing when I was at Barnes and Noble the other week and saw a five-year journal for one sentence a day. The journal’s instructions were to write one sentence each day about what you find beautiful. Well, I may not write it down every day, but from here on out, I am determined to think each day about what I find wonderful!