Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Grateful


After my grandmother was no longer able to host the Mega-Family-Thanksgiving meal, we (otherwise fortunate) offspring were forced to create new traditions of our own. One of mine was the “Blessings Box.” It was a humble creation fashioned from a shoe box, wrapping paper, scissors, and tape.

I blackmailed my family and guests into submitting a “blessing card” before they could receive the feast. It forced us all to stop for a minute and write it down. It made the whole thing less generic, more personal.

What am I truly thankful for?

Am I truly thankful at all?

After seeing the things I’ve seen…and being the places I’ve been…over the past year and a half, my list is a little different from before.

This year,

I am thankful I can breathe.

I am thankful I can swallow.

I am thankful I can move.

I am thankful I can see.

I am thankful I can hear.

I am thankful I can talk.

I am thankful I can go to the bathroom by myself.

(I know people who cannot.)


I am thankful I can walk.

I am thankful I can dance.

I am thankful I can think.

I am thankful I can write.

(I’ve seen people who cannot.)


I am thankful I have a family.

I am thankful I have not outlived my children.

I am thankful that my children speak to me.

I am thankful that my children are not in jail.

(I know people who cannot say these things.)


I am thankful for true friends…and for finding out who they are.

I am thankful for my extended family.

I am thankful for unconditional love.

I am thankful for the compassion of strangers.

(I have encountered people who have no one at all.)


I am not proud that I have been given these great gifts, when others I know have not. I am in no way more worthy than they.

So…

I am especially thankful for forgiveness.

I am thankful for mercy.

I am thankful for grace.

I am thankful that this isn’t all there is.

I am thankful that this is not home.

I am thankful that it’s never too late.


I am thankful that God is in control, and I am not.

I am thankful that I know I am not the master of my own fate.

I am thankful that life has stripped me, broken me, humbled me…

and made me so very, very, very

grateful.

3 comments:

candycarrillo said...

Kim, I just wrote a lengthy comment(which disappeared into cyberspace) touting your ability to take a horrendous situation, esp. with your own health issues, and find opportunites to be grateful. I am blessed to have YOU as a friend. You have an amazing ability to take experiences and write about them with such insight and raw honesty. Not many with your abilities would share some of the thoughts you've experienced- most would hide them. I love your brutal honesty how real life hurts have been turned into blessings. So many of us who can't comprehend just how much your entire family has been through. Keep writing from the heart- I know we all anticipate a new lesson each time.
Love,
Candy

Carolyn Nolen said...

I am very grateful for your words right now....thank you! cjn:)

Jen said...

Oh my goodness, this is so beautiful. Thank you for this wonderful post.

(Here via Nie.)