Gratitude

Sometimes, it’s difficult to find things to be grateful for. This usually happens when we are looking at the things in life that we don’t have, rather than the things we do. Tonight I spent Thanksgiving with one blood relative. I could look at that out of context, which I tend to do, and start to feel sorry for myself. I could start to think that I am missing out on something because I don’t have any children, or that I don’t have a very good family.

But what I didn’t mention was that in addition to my father, my step-mother was present, and that she has been a better mother to me than my real mother was before she passed many years ago. What I didn’t mention was that her three children were also present, and along with them were their combined 8 children. What I didn’t mention was that I was able to make several of those kids smile, just by being who I am. What I didn’t mention was that they also made me smile. What I didn’t mention was that my step-mother’s ex-husband was also there, and I was able to help him with some of his computer problems. A long time ago, I became that guy amongst most of my friends and family. What I also didn’t mention was that my father’s love for me sometimes is the equivalent of a dozen blood relatives. The way he tolerates my moods, and the way I sometimes want to push away because I don’t want him to carry the burden of things I go through sometimes. He is truly the definition of unconditional love, even though he sometimes only knows how to express that with his left brain.

What I also didn’t mention was that I had fun. I left with a smile on my face. So it seems that blood isn’t the only requirement to feel like you are amongst family. Tonight I made a decision to be around people even though I didn’t really want to. I feel pretty good right now as a result. Can you imagine how I’d feel if I decided to spend Thanksgiving alone?

Sometimes it’s important to step back and look at the big picture and be grateful that there is a big picture to look at. Tonight I’ve thought of many things to be grateful for, and at the top of my list is that I made a decision to escape from my head, even if just for a little while.

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