--Frank A. Clark
Last year, I posted a blog where I made a list of things I was thankful for, however, I did it a bit after Thanksgiving on a day I was feeling very alone and down in the dumps. This year, I'm doing it on Thanksgiving, and in a much better mood. Perhaps next time I'm in a foul mood I can refer back to this page and cheer myself up a bit!
So here it is. This year (and always), I am most thankful for...
- My husband is home for the holidays! He has missed the past 2 holiday seasons due to military deployments. It is great to have him home. Celebrating with family was almost sad and depressing without him!
- As strange as this my sound... growing up redneck! I had a great childhood! While I didn't want for much, I was never spoiled either. I worked in the grove, got dirty, went camping, shot guns, thew cow patties at my brother, swam in the river, and had to help work the cattle from time to time. But I also got a brand new car for my HS graduation (with stipulations - I had to keep grades up in college for one); always had new Speedo swimsuits for swim team and any other "extras" like goggles, fins, and weight gloves that I needed (or more accurately, wanted); all of my senior year stuff was paid for like prom, homecoming, the senior beauty pageant, senior pictures, invites, announcements, etc; I was sent to college without getting/needing student loans so there is nothing for me to need to pay back now. In college I was given just enough "spending money" so that I could pay my bills without working ALL the time leaving no time for studying or a social life, but I did have to have a job. What my parents sent would not pay my bills alone, a part time job was necessary. It was a well balanced life and my parents did an amazing job at keeping me on the fine edge.
- Along with that, I am also thankful to be getting my Master's Degree without student loans. I have a scholarship that pays for 1/2 of the tuition, Daddy has agreed to pay the other half provided I get A's in the class (so far, straight A's with five more classes to take!), and I pay for my books and supplies like any computer software I've needed. I realize I am very fortunate in this and can never thank my father enough for this gift. He says my success will be payment enough for him. I hope I can live up to it!
- Family. Yes, family can get on your nerves at times, and some members of the family more than others, but I have an awesome extended family that I know, even through fights and squabbles, will always be there for me in an instant if I need them.
- A good book and a cozy blanket. I LOVE to read a good book. It's the best relaxer I've ever found. You can totally lose yourself for a while and slip into someone else's world, forgetting your own troubles momentarily.
- Good friends. Not only do I have awesome friends that are there for me in a heartbeat, but my husband has great friends as well. I may often prefer the company of my own friends, but I know that my husband's friends will always be there for me if I need them as well. Maybe not for a mani/pedi/spa day, but definitely for the bigger stuff - haha - I suddenly have images of Hubby's friends, all current or former military, getting pedicures! I have no doubt that if, God forbid, the worst happens, in addition to my own wonderful friends and family, I will have a house full of military men and women, some who may have flown in from the other side of the country or the world and many of them having never actually met me in person, offering to do anything and everything I need.
- My health. Having a father with cancer and a little brother who is in remission allows you to really see up close and personal how delicate life is. Even though I know and have met so many people who have overcome so many terrible things such as cancer, polio, and diabetes, I am am thankful that for the moment, I do not have to endure that struggle.
- My family's health. No, not everyone is as healthy as I would like them to be, but this year there is no one in the hospital (knock on wood) while I write this. My step-brother Carl is in Remission. Daddy is doing great. My nephew is out of the hospital and is beginning to crawl around and be a "normal" 1.5 year old. Do I wish everyone was in 100% perfect health, yes, of course, but I am thankful for the small things as well as the large ones.
- As yesterday's post pointed out, I remain thankful for my father's bone marrow donor, as well as everyone who is on the list.
- Of course, as always, I am highly thankful for the men and women of the armed forces who risk everything they have from their families to their very lives to protect the rest of us. They fight so that we can feel safe in our beds at night in our own homes.
- Last but definately not least, I am thankful for those who have come before me and made my way of life possible. Martin Luther King, Ghandi, the founding fathers, and numerous others who fought, made tough decisions, and never gave up on the hope and dream to make the world a better place than the one they were born into.