Thursday, November 25, 2010

Trying To Be Thankful

I spend quite a bit of time in general trying to find things for which I am thankful.  The last 15 months have been nothing less than crazy. I lost my marriage.  I lost some friends who were very dear to me.  I lost two very cherished members of my family.  I can easily say the last 15 months have been both the worst and the best months of my life.

Amid the turmoil, many good things have happened to me, too.  Trekking paths I would have never imagined myself on, finding happiness in unlikely places. Mostly, I have spent more time focusing on things that really matter rather than trying to make everyone else happy at my expense.  I have had to learn who I really am rather than trying to be what I think everyone else wants me to be.  It's been an adventure, but I don't have all the answers yet.  I may never have all the answers, but I'm committed to never stop questioning.  I never again want to experience the depressing complacency I succumbed to years ago.

But yet, there is always change.  After taking a risk on a new and exciting job, my boyfriend lost the new job on an insurance technicality with no other temporary positions available as a backup.  I'm a month or two behind on some bills because I tried to help with child care costs.  Now my student loans are coming up for repayment in a couple weeks and are shockingly close to $700 a month.  The promise of a raise at work is unlikely amid low sales and some downsizing as a response.  I have just enough in savings to cover the current round of bills and get caught up and then we enter survival mode.  I could lose a lot of the things (convenience services like cell phones, random stuff, the house to name a few) I have worked very hard to achieve over the last several years and I would be lying if I said I was handling the anticipation of such a blow to my pride gracefully.  I'm more like a wounded animal: baring my teeth and snapping at anyone attempting to approach.

It's hard to look forward and be thankful when I feel like I'm in a house of cards and can see a storm blowing in my direction.  But I have many things to be thankful for.

I'm thankful for my boyfriend who is nothing less than a rock who is not just supportive, but resourceful and creative.  I have faith in him and trust him completely, and I'm proud of him for taking a risk to make his life (and our lives) better, even though it did not work out like we hoped.

I'm thankful for my best friend who always reminds me to look on the bright side of life, including exercising kindness to others and kindness to myself.

I am thankful for the amazing people I am lucky enough to call friends.  These are the people that put up with long periods of silence from me when I was stressing over some thing or another and still welcomed me back with open arms unquestioningly whenever I was free to visit.

I am thankful for my family who, despite the emotional gaps, never hesitate to help no matter what the situation.

I am also most thankful for myself because, seriously, where the hell would I be without me?!  Even though I can be an emotional wreck, I'm smart and resourceful.  I am a survivor.  I'm too hard-headed to give up on almost anything.

I'm still pretty tender right now, emotionally speaking.  I don't know how I'm going to make it to winter, much less get through it.  I'm trying to see it as a challenge to live more simply, more fully, and find and do the things that really make me happy.  And I'm thankful, very thankful, for the opportunity of change.

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