As my regular readers know, I don’t do a lot of regular “blogging” on this blog. I mostly only post stories, and I like it that way. But this challenge is a good one, and worth taking a little break from my normal blog for. Too often, especially lately, I get caught up in what I don’t have and what isn’t working. It’s good to be reminded to stop, assess, and remember what is good in life. A big thank you to Millie Thom for sending me this challenge!
Now for the Rules:
* Share this image (top one) in your blog post
* Write about 5 people in your life you are thankful for
* Write about 5 things in 2015 that you are thankful for
* Spread the love and challenge 5 other blogs to take part
Five people I’m thankful for in 2015 are:
1. My sister April, who is so sweet and kind and perpetually cheerful that I sometimes think she should have been named Joy instead of me. I am always happy to have her in my life, but especially recently. I’ve been struggling with some financial problems and she has been spontaneously and very generously helpful, in that “no guilt, no strings attached” way that one wishes all families could always be.
2. My former colleague Stu, a dear man who continues to be an invaluable mentor to me despite retiring and moving across the state. If it weren’t for him, I would never have made it this far in my new career move. The only downside to having worked with Stu is that he’s set the bar so high!
3. My good friend Susan, who is my constant companion at numerous Shakespeare in the Park plays, classical concerts, and various other adventures all year long. She’s also someone I can always count on to more than pull her weight in the dish-to-share department—boy, do we eat well at those Shakespeare picnics! This year she even came to the county fair with me, although she tagged in her teenaged daughter to join me for the wild carnival rides part of the afternoon.
4. All the members of my two writers critique groups, but especially Sue, who consistently gives me excellent feedback about plot and character. The other writers have helped me clean up many pragmatic aspects of my writing style over the last year and a half, but without someone who can fully engage with and discuss the content, the best grammar and punctuation and word choice gets you nowhere.
5. Everyone who’s helped and encouraged me with this blog, especially all the other bloggers that I’ve met since I started four months ago. Your likes and comments mean the world to me, and I’m so appreciative that you take the time to read and leave feedback.
Five things I’m thankful for in 2015:
1. I’m thankful that my beloved cat Nyx is still alive. At the beginning of the year, Nyx was very ill. Even though she was only two years old, her kidneys were severely damaged and she was losing a lot of weight. I thought she had weeks to live, then perhaps months. But after dogged persistence and care (and only losing my patience a few (hundred) times), I finally got her eating back on track and her weight loss to slow and even reverse. Now she’s regained some weight and stabilized, and for the time being seems (if you don’t look at the ultrasounds or blood tests) to be a perfectly healthy and happy cat.
2. I’m thankful for a year of reasonably good health for me and my family—my parents, my sister, and her husband. After a long spate of unrelated and unusual health problems, going for a whole year without surgery is a welcome change for me. To give you an idea: for a last-minute costume last Halloween, I dressed as a surgical patient, because I didn’t need anything other than the various braces, crutches, eye patches, and bandages from my own recent experiences. It was an incredibly uncomfortable costume though; I would not recommend it!
3. I’m thankful that I live someplace that offers such wonderful free concerts and plays in the park, and where I can walk to work and just about anywhere I need to go, all year round.
4. This may sound like a shill, but I’m thankful that WordPress gives me a free option for hosting my blog here, and offers wonderful help like the free Blogging 101 class I took last month. If I’d had to pay to invest in trying this new thing, I don’t know how long I might have put it off, waiting to somehow feel certain that it would work.
5. Finally, in the broader context, I am thankful that same-sex marriage finally became legal in my country (the US) this year. I am thrilled on behalf of my LGBT friends, that their unions are recognized as they should be, and personally happy to be part of a world taking one step closer to social equality and civil rights and love for all.
And a thousand other things as well. It’s easy to focus on the myriad losses and pains and mistakes and frustrations, but overall, I know I am incredibly lucky to live this life.
These are my five nominees:
I chose these five people because I am thankful to each one of them. And to many more—it was hard to choose just five!
To my readers—if you haven’t visited these blogs before, I highly recommend that you do.
To the nominees—whether you’ve commented on my blog many times or don’t even recognize my name, I’ve been encouraged and inspired by you and your blog, and wanted to let you know that you’re making a difference. I know not everyone participates in this kind of writing challenge, or maybe you’d like to write the thankful post but not pass it onto others, which is fine in my book. Either way, please accept my BIG THANKS.
- Kristen at Kristen Lamb’s Blog
- Dan at Dan Alatorre, Author
- J. A. Allen at Scribbles on Cocktail Napkins
- Joy at Priceless Joy and Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers
- LRose at the Blog Propellant
To everyone—take a minute, right now, to think about what you’re thankful for. If you’re feeling too stressed out and busy and dissatisfied with your life to do that, well, that’s exactly the right time to stop and remember what IS right and wonderful and beautiful in your life.
Warm wishes to all of you!