Sunday, November 21, 2010

Gratitude For All

I’d like to put a different spin on the usual Thanksgiving message, which, of course, is gratitude for the amazing blessings and abundance in our lives. Naturally, I do feel grateful for my family, for the food on our table, for my friends, and for the rising and setting of the sun each day. But above and beyond that I’d like to say a few words about the things in my life that didn’t work out the way I hoped they would, about the disappointments, and rejections, and screw-ups that allowed me to learn. For instance:
  • I am grateful that so many agents rejected my wonderful manuscript, The Cobra Cure, because all this rejection has taught me, as Winston Churchill once advised, to “never, ever give up.” I am grateful that I have finally learned that it’s the journey—in writing, and in life—not the fruit of the action or the end result that truly matters.
  • I am grateful that numerous young men whom I once had crushes on in high school and college did not end up to be my mate. Yes, they were cute, and cool. But they were not the kind of fellows I would have been happy with in the long run. And so I am grateful that for whatever reason, they broke my heart (or I broke theirs).
  • I am grateful that I did not give birth to a daughter. Yes, I know that daughters are fantastic, and for years I thought it would be nice to have one. But three sons have taught me so much about life that I’m not at all sorry they came my way. They are my boy blessings.
  • I am eternally grateful that I did not get several of the "real" jobs I thought I'd have excelled at, because this has enabled me to live my life as a freelancer, which has been perfect for me. And because I have no “job” I can’t be fired or laid off. And I can take a walk—or a nap-- in the morning or afternoon if I feel like it.
  • I am grateful that I was rejected by Cornell University because had I gone to Cornell University I would never have met my dear friend Francine at Kirkland College.
  • I am grateful that I was born into a family that always had plenty to eat and lots of love, but very little extra cash. The fact that we could only afford one vacation per year to a modest cabin in the Adirondacks made that one week so special that I’ve always remembered my childhood vacations with extraordinary fondness. And I feel lucky that because there wasn’t much money around, what to spend it on was never really an issue.
  • I am grateful that I live in a cozy little house that doesn’t take me all day to clean. I am grateful that the huge Victorian I had my eye on didn’t pan out, because if it had I would be doing a helluva lot of dusting.
  • I am, lastly-- for this list could go on and on--truly grateful that five years after being diagnosed with breast cancer, I am still here. I don’t view cancer as a gift, but I am grateful for the many lessons it taught me about living my life to the fullest.
  • And…this is really the last one…I’m grateful to you few folks who read this blog. Thanks, sistah! And to my best friends….and to a few others (you know who you are!) I didn’t really want hundreds of “followers” anyway, because then I’d really have to watch what I say.
  • Happy Thanksgiving to all!

1 comment:

  1. Kathy, I read this posting last night, and I have to tell you that your poignant and powerful message about gratitude is still lingering with me and I know will continue to do so for some time...... What a true sign of a very good writer!