Thanksgiving is an interesting holiday. We express our thanks about the things in our life by coming together and over eating...I am not sure how that shows gratitude, but hey, I play along every year. No matter the events that actually happen on Thanksgiving day, I still come away thinking about the things I am thankful for. I wanted to list a few of those things for you:
1. My wonderful children. No two things could bring me greater joy than they can. I go to bed every night amazed that I could be their mother. They make me laugh, they make me cry, they make me scream, and they make me happier than I have ever been in my life.
2. Aaron, of course. He is an amazing father to my two wonderful children. He gives them so much, physically and emotionally. He is very good to me as well. I have a good life and I am happy, and I owe that to Aaron. Thanks baby, for all you do.
3. My Heavenly Father. I am saddened sometimes by the world we live in...where television, media, and many social circles have turned being a conservative christian into meaning you are crazy and out of touch with reality. Well, I am neither and I am not afraid to say, thank you God, for giving me everything that I have, for making me everything that I am, and for caring about me so much.
4. My father for teaching me, when I was a teenager, the importance of giving no matter how little you may feel you have. Even though we didn't have much, my father always tried to give more to others. Thank you Dad for teaching me that I can always give to those who are in need. On that note, however, I do appreciate the opportunity to decide who I can help, so please, Mr. Obama, don't tell me my virtue is "selfishness" because I don't want you to decide what organizations my money goes to.
5. My relationship with my sister. It has been many years in the making, but I love what it has grown in to. She is a constant for me. She lets me vent, but keeps me grounded. She seeks my advise, which I so love to give. She helps me understand why I do or say the things I do and say,both the good and the bad. We have been through a lot together and I hope she knows that I will always be there for her, as I know she would be for me.
6. Aaron's family. They are a refuge for me. They have welcomed me with open arms and have shown me so much love over the last 10 years. I often say that my sister is the only family I have left, but I know that it is not true. Aaron's mom and dad are my mom and dad, Aaron's brothers and sisters are my brothers and sisters, and I love them as such. Thank you for being a family I can be proud to say I am part of. I love you all.
7. Facebook. Really, I am hardly ever on it and I have less than 50 friends...but it has kept me in contact with people I only speak to on occasion, and it has allowed me to reconnect with friends I have not seen in over 15 years.
8. Movies (and I should say books), like Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants, and Mama Mia!, that remind me the importance of having good friends. I am terrible at keeping in touch. Many of you can attest to that. But then I experience stories like these that slap me across the face and help me see that having a few good friends can get you through just about anything and life does not draw the same kind of happiness without them. I really need to do better.
9. Laughter. Daniel's laugh is infectious and Miriam's laugh is genuine. Every time I hear either I feel so much peace. Their laughter reminds me how important it is to let go of all the things that I find myself wrapped up in each day and just to sit down and have fun with them. Also, my favorite part of the day is when I climb into bed with my husband and we laugh with each other about so many things. I am willing to sacrifice some sleep for bits of laughter with Aaron. It is hard to worry about the stresses of life when you are laughing together.
10. My home. Honestly, there are many things I would change about it physically, but I am so thankful for my home. It is a warm shelter to rest our heads. It is the place where we find joy together. Even if it is not my dream home, anywhere that I am safe with my family will always be a wonderful home. And I am thankful to Aaron for working so hard to provide us with a nice place to live.
11. My freedom. I know I live in a country that is not perfect, but there is no where else I would rather call home (although I look forward to seeing so much more of the world when I grow up). I am thankful for my uncles who served a lifetime in the military to give me the freedoms I have today. I am thankful for Aaron's brothers who have sacrificed so recently to help me feel some peace of mind as they try to make our world a more peaceful place. I am thankful that with a lot of work and dedication my husband can own his own business. I am thankful that I can choose where my children go to school and that there are no limitations for them if they just put there minds to it. I am thankful that I can go to the church of my choice without fear that I will be killed doing so. And, although I am nervous about what the next four years will bring, I am thankful for a government that is not a dictatorship. A government that is not ruled by one man who is only concerned about his own well being. I still have faith that even though I do not agree with our President Elect and the majority of the Senate...our country will still be run with the intent to do what is best for its people. Please don't let me down Mr. Obama.
I am thankful for the holiday season which makes it so easy to reflect on the things I am thankful for. Hopefully I can live my whole year expressing my gratitude to my God and to my family, because, really, everything else means so little.