Grateful Words for Those Special Ones

Happy Thanksgiving, everybody. It can mean so many different things to each of us. For some, it’s all about the meal and morning viewing of the Macy’s Parade while preparing a variety of dishes. For others, it may have more to do with pumpkin pie and catching gridiron action in the afternoon on TV. And for others, it’s about giving back – spending time helping out a local food bank or homeless shelter, possibly even delivering and serving meals to others.

It’s easy to get caught up in Black Friday sales plotting, setting up table settings and preparing holiday fare and to forget about the whole point of the holiday…taking a few moments to consider what we are most thankful for. And you don’t have to be religious or subscribe to any certain philosophy to recognize this. It’s simply about stopping our whirlwind lives for a moment to recognize who and what we are most appreciative for and acknowledging this in some way – to ourselves or to them directly.

This week, I posed a question to spark your own thoughts on WHO that might be and asked:
Thinking about the people who have come into your life (not parents, siblings or children, but those who have crossed your path and who you have CHOSEN to connect with – past or present). Who do you hold special gratitude for and why?

I am thankful for my dog, Dexter. He’s my first and only dog and has singlehandedly taught me the true meaning of unconditional love. I’ve never looked at animals the same way after connecting with this little creature. It’s been difficult watching him age before my eyes. He’s nearly 15 and I realize that my remaining time with him is probably limited to a few more years, if that. So I treasure every moment I have to spend with him, the love of my life. And yes, my husband knows this and understands.

I am thankful for family and friends I’ve been able to reconnect with over the past year or two. Years ago, circumstances led me to find myself disconnected with some of my family as a young adult, but I’m happy that thanks to the lovely world of Facebook, I have been able to reconnect with some of them and start up a new dialogue as “old lady” Chris. It’s also nice to communicate again on a semi-regular basis with pen pals from 20+ years ago and elementary school classmates and friends from well over 30+ years ago. I am not that same person – who is? – but it’s wonderful to reconnect again and learn that we still have much in common in interests or philosophies so many years later.

I am thankful for supportive friends who know just what to say or do when I’m spinning like a crazy person. One of my great friends recently stepped in to help me wrap my arms around this desire to complete a book and lit a fire under my butt, helping me get on a writing schedule and creating an accountability angle. She may have given me the greatest gift of all, helping me facilitate the pursuit of one of my dreams, writing a book. And when I do complete it – not IF I do – I can only hope that I’ll be able to show her just how appreciative I am for her ingenuity and belief in me as a writer and especially as a friend. Another good friend stepped in to show support earlier this year when I felt like my world was crashing down on me when my husband was in the hospital. And later, she came through again to help offer guidance to one of my stepsons making a career move. Friends don’t wait for you to ask them for help – they see the need and they offer and go above and beyond. I am so fortunate to have a friend like this looking out for me, and I will always do my best to do the same for her. There are so many other friends who each serve a unique role and each of them holds a special place in my heart – for their willingness to be adventurous and try new restaurants with me, dive into new projects that may or may not work or simply just listen or share over coffee.

I am thankful for the family that I did not personally build or earn, but was fortunate to have presented to me. I never dreamt at 42 that I would have two wonderful stepsons, an awesome daughter-in-law, two spectacular grandchildren, a groovy brother-in-law and duo of sisters-in-law and truly the coolest nieces on the planet – bar none. I am an only child without a lot of local family. When I got married, I had no idea of the jackpot to come. I am such a lucky lady to know all of these sweet, thoughtful people that I too can call family.

I am thankful for that man who says he loves me, reading the newspaper in the other room right now. Who knows why we met? I don’t believe in fate or karma or soulmates (not really) but it does seem rather odd how much we had in common even when on the surface, our lives seemed so different when we met, at least at different junctions along the tracks. Nothing’s perfect – when is it ever? I think after knowing you 18 years we both know exactly how to push just the right button to either please or piss off the other. But I also know that there is no one else on this planet I trust more implicitly, believe in more fully or love more completely than you. I also joke that you’re “my Superman” but it’s true, you are. (And you’re even secure enough to let me crush on Henry Cavill, the next “Man of Steel”…) You’re the real deal, LK, and I’m just thankful that I wasn’t too stubborn or blind to notice (says the chick with increasingly bad eyesight…and see, we even have that in common, too).

***

I hope that you too will take a few moments to think about who you are most grateful for coming into your life – especially, those for whom you made the choice to forge that friendship or build that relationship. We don’t always have a say regarding how we come into this world and who sees to it, but when we’re old enough to make those decisions of who we want to spend our time with and how we want to spend it, that’s when we realize who adds meaning and truth to our world.

Best wishes to you and your family for a safe, beautiful and peaceful Thanksgiving holiday to my American blog visitors, and to everyone else, a fun, beautiful day.

Cheers to finding that daily spark in your life!
~Chris

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