Wednesday, November 25, 2009
What I am Thankful for...
Beth's Diner in Greenlake is a great place to stop in and have a six egg omlette dripping with cheese and ham and mushrooms - and to read the posts on the wall of the visitors that come in for just a tourist stop - this was my second visit - so I was now no longer a tourist - I was a real customer - but this little napkin, this close to Thanksgiving - it kind of plucked at me like that out of key piano note that you hear - it reminded me of a year ago - and begged the question - "What has changed since then and now - and why does this napkin seem so foreign - even if I felt exactly the same way a year ago..."
Last Thanksgiving, well, that was another post, but last Thanksgiving sucked. It sucked for my family, my children, my in-laws, my ex-wife - it just plain out and out sucked - it sucked from the things that I and others had done - and thank god, that was last Thanksgiving - granted, this year will be a little different, but enough water has toppled over the levy to clear away enough of the debris left, the flood of bad things that came last season washed up enough silt and nutrients to start new traditions and a little bit of growth...
There are several things that I am happy that I have - all of which are temporary, fleeting, but they are here today - and that is what counts -
1. I am thankful for friends like Aaron and Mike - they listen - and like the song says, there is no need to put quotations around the word friend - whether it is talking about how to proceed with my career, or what to do about some situation, or just pissing off the balcony at three am in between drunken song writing sessions - they actually care - and I am thankful that they do.
2. I am thankful for our children - these two little things that Christy and I made together are enough to remind me that I do unpleasant things for a reason - I get up, I go to work, I clean the house, I discipline, I rearrange the schedule- just to be able to get the joy that they feel and to give them as much of me as they deserve. This past year, I am thankful that I have grown and learned into being a real father - and not just a resident. To see them smile, laugh, talk, cry, and just love - I am thankful for that.
3. I am thankful for my parents - all four of them - each of them has a different take on life, and the pursuits that I dance around with - but all of them have always given me every opportunity to succeed and have always been there behind me just in case things got a little slippery. It took this past year to realize that - again, I am thankful that I have.
4. I am thankful for my health - even though I shovel Pirate Booty and Coors Light into my pudgy frame a little too frequently, there are things out there that can kill you even when you take every minute to be a little more cautious - I am thankful that I have been able to preserve what health I have.
5. I am thankful for my job - as much as I bitch and moan about it - how many people today get to say that they set a plan out for themselves, worked to that plan - and had a company with the patience and compassion to not only let me grow into the work, but designed work that fit me. I get paid to do what I love to do - and that is a blessing.
6. I am thankful to live in the United States. This country may not be the most liberal country in the world, nor does it have the best health care or the best legal system and, granted, we have some issues with wealth distribution across the lines - but in all reality, none of us would be reading this sentence in some other countries that are out there - and I certainly could not afford a laptop or wireless connections with the tax rates that other industrialized nations have...
7. I am thankful that all I had to worry about this morning was my timesheet - I did not have to get water, did not have to worry if my kids were safe, did not have to think about how I was going to put food on the table - I consider myself lucky.
8. I am thankful to have a companion - who knows where that road is going to wander to - but I know that it is nice to have someone to talk with that understands the porridge in my brains - I like that.
Most of all - I am thankful that things are calming down a bit. It has taken a year to get to a place where I can look back at my actions - and say to anyone who cares to ask - I am not always the best person, and do not always make the best decisions - but I can assure you that none of my actions were ever intentionally designed to make anyone else feel like less of a person - they were selfish, sometimes ridiculous, and perhaps a bit immature - but they happened. If for no other reason, I am thankful to have had the opportunity to learn a little bit more about myself through those moments.
Happy Thanksgiving Everyone - go enjoy your families, friends, or whatever - and the minute you don't think you have anything to be thankful for - just shoot me an email, and I will help you pick a few out.