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I take things for granted.  I don’t appreciate the material things I have, the obstacles I’ve overcome, the hard work I’ve put forth to get to this place in my life, or the people who are in my life who truly care and are interested in what I’m doing or how I’m feeling.  Not always.  Most of the time, I can recognize and appreciate these things and people.  But sometimes, I find myself hosting my pity party or griping about the most insignificant annoyance and not stopping to fully appreciate what I have or don’t have, what I’ve done or not done, where I’ve been or not been.  So this is just a post to express gratitude for what I sometimes don’t fully appreciate.

I am grateful that I have a job that puts a roof over my head, food in my pantry, provides transportation, allows me to enjoy the culinary and musical offerings of this city, and makes it possible to be saving for a trip to Paris.  From my previous post, you all know that I’m not exactly content with my career choice (or non-choice as it were), and in today’s times, I feel extremely fortunate to have an income.  A lot of people are suffering the effects of our disastrous economy, and I am lucky not to have been affected in any major life-altering way by these sad and scary times.  This is my expression of gratitude for that job.  Even if it’s not bringing me a sense of personal satisfaction, it does bring me the basics and then-some of life.

I am grateful for the love of the written word.  I’ve always been a voracious reader, but never tapped into my potential for writing until recently.  It has brought out a part of me I never knew existed, and I am excited about cultivating this love and anticipate the results of my efforts.

I am grateful that I had a childhood where abuse and neglect were never even remote possibilities.  I grew up very sheltered from the real world until I realized what the real world had to offer, and while it did not burst initially, the dam did slowly crack over time.  Thank goodness.  I am glad I realized that what the world held for me was not all bad, dangerous and detrimental to my soul. My parents, to their credit, raised me with the best intentions.  I was not exposed to the diversities of life, people, religions, or ideals, nor was I exposed to and encouraged to learn about secular things such as art and literary works.  My childhood knowledge lacked academia and was single-sided and narrow.  I am thankful that I realized there was a world outside the world of my youth.  I am disappointed that my family can’t understand and exhibit no curiosity about my life; however, they are them and I am me.  They loved me enough to do their very best and for that I am grateful for them.

I am grateful that I can experience the benefits of stopping to smell the roses and can enjoy the openness it brings.  Trying to live in the moment is difficult.  We get so caught up in the destination, we miss the journey.  So fixated on the planning that we don’t enjoy the party.  Sometimes it takes all I have to make myself let go of the results and just enjoy the path to the goal.  But when I do, life is much simpler, less stressful, and so much more enjoyable.

I am grateful for living alone for so many years.  I learned so many things about myself, electricity and plumbing that I wouldn’t take those years back for anything.  Seriously, when it’s up to you and you only to change the ballcock on the toilet (not even knowing what the hell it is and giggling like a 10 year-old when I verified that that was indeed its technical name), you buck up, read the directions or call on your best friend Google, and just do it.  Similarly, you learn things about yourself you never knew.  For example, I can go from 5:00 on a Friday afternoon to 8:00 on a Monday morning and never speak a word out loud.  So if I ever had the inclination to join a convent, the vow of silence would be a piece of cake.

I am grateful for all of my unsuccessful relationships.  Without experiencing all of the emotions that come with the failure of something you wanted so badly to succeed, I would not be the person I am today.  I developed strength from going through heartbreak after heartbreak.  I also, after dating every type of guy imaginable (and some unimaginable), figured out what’s important to me and what is not.  Along these lines, I am grateful for all the Al-Anon meetings I attended attempting to understand the addict in my life.  These meetings kicked off the beginning of my self-awareness and acceptance and started me down my yellow brick road in search of the keys that unlock my potential for greatness.

I am grateful for FINALLY finding My Love.  It’s difficult for me to say that after all I’ve been through, I deserve him, because at times I feel so unworthy of his goodness.  However, I do deserve him just as much as he deserves me.  We found each other at the right times in our lives.  He is good for me and I am good for him.  I do not ever want to take him for granted and cannot imagine I will.  I am grateful for the love he gives me.  It is fulfilling.  I am also grateful for the love I have to give him.  It is abundant.

Just a little gratitude today because I needed to put it out there.  That is all.