As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.John F. Kennedy
There are times in our lives where we may question what on earth can we be grateful for? What’s this whole “gratefulness” thing about anyway and why does it matter? At those dark times it may feel like being grateful is an elusive pipedream that is reserved for those who seem to have it all together and are exactly where they want to be in their life, their career, and their relationships. What’s their secret?
The truth is, there is no secret. Life can truly be brutal, yet there IS ALWAYS something to be grateful for. This year, I have been challenged to practice that mantra. The life I thought I had was “blown away” in a matter of hours and I was left with nothing but ashes.
Even in my darkest moments and unrelenting heartache, I would force myself to find at least one thing to be grateful for. That one practice proved to be a powerful tool in my journey towards recovery and resilience. Sometimes it was being grateful for something as simple as finding a mate to a favorite earring, an important document I thought had been lost, or a call from a dear friend when I felt terribly alone. Sometimes it was the perfect song with lyrics that spoke gently to my heart and allowed me to breathe…just long enough to appreciate the next thing to be grateful for. The never-ending sweet faces of my fur babies kept me feeling appreciative for such devotion.
I found that if I was able to feel gratitude, the harshness of reality softened a bit. This practice of stringing one grateful moment with the next truly allowed me to move forward with hope for another day. Gratitude was the self-care tool that soothed my shattered heart and provided tenderness to nurture a broken soul.
Thanksgiving is more than just a day…it’s a lifestyle.
It’s this lifestyle of gratitude that transformed my life and propelled me forward to discover real love, deep hope and profound appreciation for my dearest friends…the ones who walked beside me, caught me and sometimes carried me. In my lifetime, I only hope I can reciprocate that kind of unselfish loving kindness.
I am grateful for each of you and wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving.But more than a day of thanks, I wish you a thankful lifestyle. I wish you the ability to practice deep gratitude every day. I hope you find that the practice allows you to shift perspective, boost resilience and affirm all the abundant good in your life. It’s a gift that’s waiting to be opened!
Gratitude turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.Melody Beattie