The news coming out of certain places, parts of the world, like the fighting in Aleppo keeps getting worse and worse. The only way I can seem to deal with it is by acknowledging the reasons I am thankful.
I am thankful it’s this year and not last. Yeah, let’s start there.
My animals love my tree. Dobby and Lumos.
I’m thankful for yet another medical checkup, my second last to my twenty-year anniversary checkup, which will come in June.
I didn’t ask what the record for that clinic has been. I don’t even think they are planning some giant party when I return in June. I just thought it worth marking.
Again, I felt like so many other patients needed the doctors a lot more than I did. I didn’t even see the head nephrologist, probably because I’ve been so stable, so I saw another doctor and he told me that, once again, my levels were good and I was out the door, after waiting for hours.
The service is not really something to complain about. It’s only twice a year. I didn’t mind sitting and waiting. And waiting some more. I know how lucky I am. It may not last forever, but until those numbers start going up, I am believing that it still could.
I’m thankful for my violin teacher’s patience as I don’t use enough of my bow or I don’t trust myself nearly enough.
We are learning Silent Night and I remember the notes, but my confidence is where the problems are.
She is always ready with suggestions for how I can keep improving.
I’m thankful for brave writers.
Sometimes you read a piece of writing and you are immediately blown away by the guts it must have taken the writer to put those words out there.
When I read this essay I instantly felt floored at the gutsy person who would put such personal thoughts out into the world. I’m not sure I could. I don’t even know where a line should be, because not all people believe everything should be written about, and still people do it.
I’m thankful we finally got our newest episode of the podcast released.
This was a show about politics, but just this once likely. It is not our area of expertise. I get far too emotional when talking about it. I just thought it was worth doing at the time. It was a serious subject, but I hope we ended on a positive and we tried to throw in a little bit of humour, where applicable.
I’m thankful we made the decision and went for a year’s upgraded subscription for SoundCloud.
This means we plan to keep going with this project into 2017 and who knows where it might lead.
I’m thankful for the chance to meet new people, local writers, to build relationships and connections.
By chance I came across a Facebook group about writing and it just so happened there were a few other writers there from my area. We all three decided it would be a good idea to meet up to discuss writing and local discussion about events with a literary theme.
It was so lovely to speak to a woman with older children, who has a longer career in writing for magazines and other publications, who is full-time freelancing. She was full of ideas and willing to share valued experiences with us.
The other woman has a science background, now with a young child at home, trying to get into the world of freelance writing. We all had something to contribute. I felt like people understood something about me, writer to writer to writer.
I felt like just one of the girls. I felt understood.
I’m thankful for a newly discovered place to shop locally.
I’m thankful my cousin runs it and took the time to help me find a few new/used things for my upcoming trip.
I’m thankful I can challenge my long running phobia of used things like secondhand or slightly worn clothes.
I am sensitive to smells and to the idea of old things. I am learning that many things have value, that it’s important not to continually contribute to the rampant consumerism and material waste, and that everything has a story. Finding a deal isn’t bad either.
I am thankful for snow.
It’s cold. It’s wet. It’s kind of messy. I know all this and I complain in the moment, just like everybody else, but then I step outside on a silent, snowy night. I listen to the silence and I feel the light flakes falling on my hair and on the car. One hits the tip of my nose and I stick out my tongue. A snowflake falls there too.
I walk through the snow coated, snow-covered, cold ground. I hear my feet crunch in it. I love a snowy December night in Canada.
So much snow falling this week in Toronto, during rush hour, and the ploughs can’t possibly keep up. This is really what we choose to complain about?
It’s the kind of silence where chaos can begin and where any screams of parts of the world are too easily ignored.
I have so much to be thankful for and I know it. I don’t always feel like I deserve it, but I know.