Tomorrow we will head to California. I have been thinking about this thanksgiving and being with family and making new friends. I have been thinking about what it is I am truly thankful for and then I thought oh my, it would be endless.
I decided to reflect on this past year….these are in no order, just thoughts passing through my crowded mind :)
~ my healthy big toe :) In February I had the joint in my big toe fused, and was not allowed to walk on it for 6 weeks. I am thankful my toe no longer hurts at all and I can do everything I did before (I wasn’t running any marathons before anyway).
~ Eric, my husband, who almost every morning leaves me loving notes, who puts up with my ridiculous fears, who encourages me to be me, who protects me from myself, who takes my side when sometimes he would have every right to not to, who loves my friends, who provides for me in abundance, who loves my cooking (no matter what it is), who is an amazing vessel of God loving me and a continual example and challenge to how we should live that in our lives.
~ God’s grace, yes in 2016. It has been a challenging year. Separating church, people, other’s beliefs, and yet in the end holding on to what I believe. Thankful for the people who have challenged and supported me through many conversations.
~ 2 little boys who remind me that life goes on. I cherish the moments I have with them. Being able to see them smile at me, tell me they love me….their joy at simple things. Grandchildren are an amazing part of life.
~ 2 brothers and their wives (who are more like sister friends then sister-in-laws). I love them all in unique ways. They all hold a place in my life and heart that no one else can fill. None of us are perfect (whew), but I have found that may be the reason I love them because neither am I and yet they still love me. Traveling with them, sharing a meal (breaking bread), laughing, crying, experiencing this journey called life with each of them has been such a gift in 2016.
~ my children & their spouses. Hard to share all the ways I am grateful, here are a few: inspire us to live life out of the box, be more adventurous, prioritize, value time together, even when the journey hits obstacles power through, listen, hear, be kind, show grace, love and then love more
~ my group of ladies I share life with. We started 3 years ago, 2 moved, some got engaged, married…life has brought all of us challenges and joys and I cannot imagine not doing life with them. If I need something I know that any of them would have my back. We challenge each other, we feed each other, we celebrate each other, in other words we love each other. This past week we celebrated our first friendsgiving together. As I looked around the room I felt such joy and peace thinking about the love I have for each of them. It also happened to be Eric’s birthday (so I invited them to bring their significant others ). One of them initiated a ‘birthday game’ where they shared memories or thoughts about Eric. I was overwhelmed (this was not his birthday party :) ). It was so special as they shared some sometimes funny and mostly serious things about him, so in that moment I realized these are not just ‘my’ group but our extended family. What an incredible gift they are to us.
~ that being said I have these 2 BFF’s who have been in my life for a very long time. Recently I was able to enjoy a Saturday morning hike with both of them at the same time. I am so incredibly undeserving to have 2 people who I can count on loving me and caring for me endlessly . Whether with texts, phone calls, lunches, weekend visits… There would be a tremendous void in my life if it were not for them.
~ trips….we were so fortunate to be able to travel to Greece this year. Their are so many reasons this trip was incredible…to name a few, the people we traveled with, seeing the places Paul was, the food (of course), Aleeki (our Greek guide), the hospitality of the Greek people….
there are lots more things….and after I push the publish button I will think…oh that…but these are here for now…I can edit later!
- I knew I would forget someone~ Frank, we live in a unique neighborhood, lots of hotels, restaurants….etc. Well our building is attached to a hotel. Every day I walk, as much as I can. I would walk past the loading dock of the hotel next door and the security guard and I would exchange smiles and sometimes a hello. I try to smile at everyone I pass, so this was no big deal. Anyway, after a while of doing this, one day about 3 months ago, he came out of his ‘space’ and said, “I think it is time I know your name.” He told me his, I told him mine. Since then I try everyday to walk by and check on him, to touch base. Just before I left for Greece I told him I would be gone for a few weeks. He told me about his trip to Greece and then said he would miss seeing me because my smile makes his day. Something that takes so little effort, that seems so simple, makes his day. Reminded me of the day in Frost Hall (as a freshmen in college), I was walking up the stairs to my 8:00 class on a Monday morning, I must have been smiling, because a professor (who didn’t know me) thanked me for smiling so early on a Monday morning. Smiles. Maybe it is not about me when I give them freely but it becomes about me when someone recognizes them and encourages me to keep on. Such a simple thing…