With all of the challenges, stresses and hardships of life, sometimes we really need to take time to reflect on all of the wonderful things we have been blessed with in our lives. My family has gone through some very difficult events in the past several years, and I sometimes find myself throwing a pity party and wondering why I am faced with so much heartache. I need to stop dwelling on my problems, stop comparing myself and my life to others, and focus on all of the incredibly wonderful things I have to be thankful for.
The SITS Girls’ are providing writing prompts for the week as part of their “Back to Blogging” series, and today’s prompt of “10 Things You are Thankful For” seemed like a perfect way to start my journey of positivity.
10 Things I am Thankful for:
1. My life partner. Greg is my best friend, my biggest supporter, my personal comedian, my therapist, my PIC. When I was single I never imagined that marriage could be so wonderful and so easy. I don’t think this is typical, though. I think I hit the husband lottery and landed myself a kind, helpful, ambitious, sympathetic, loyal, funny, handsome, easy-going man who makes my heart jump every time he walks in the door or wakes me up with a cup of coffee and a kiss. Everyone who know Greg knows he is an awesome person, but not many get to experience the “real” Greg… the goofy, hilarious and sensitive man that brings happiness to even the worst of my days.
2. My parents. I am so very lucky to have grown up with two parents who cared about me and my brother more than anything in the world; who worked hard every day to provide for us; who taught us by example to be kind, honest, hard-working, compassionate, generous people; who instilled in us a strong faith in God to help us through the difficult times and give purpose to our lives. Even though I lost my mom way too soon, I firmly believe that we packed more love and memories into our 24 years together than some mothers/daughters experience in a full lifetime. I still miss her every minute of every day, but I am so thankful for the times we shared and her unconditional love. My dad has a heart of gold. He is one of the most generous and loving men there are and he continues to support me, my brother, and our new families. I couldn’t have asked for better parents, and I am so thankful for the way they raised me and the love they always gave me (isn’t that a 2-Pac song?).
3. My brother and his family. When I am sad, I just watch a video of my 4-year-old niece Cara or my 2-year-old nephew Cavan. They are the cutest, sweetest little kids. I love them both so much and I am so thankful to be part of their lives. Even though Cavan can barely say my name (but he’s getting there!) and Cara thinks Uncle Greg is cooler than me, they are still my favorite people to hang out with (besides Greg, of course). My brother is an amazing dad to them and has always been a great big brother to me. I am also thankful for his kind and loving wife who happily supports him and all of his crazy projects, outfits and craigslist purchases; and who loves our family like her own.
4. Our unborn baby, Gregory. Just about a month ago, Greg and I lost our first and only child after just a few short months of pregnancy. We have struggled with infertility, and we had waited and prayed and hoped so long for this tiny little miracle that we were finally blessed with this past summer. Losing our precious baby was absolutely devastating for both of us, but he gave us so much joy during his short little life, brought us even closer to each other, strengthened our faith, and gave us hope.
5. My in-laws. They are crazy (the good kind of crazy), they can be loud and sometimes their stories are hard to follow, but they are awesome, loving and supportive people who have welcomed me into their family with open arms. My MIL has been there for me through everything. Me, her and my kick-ass soon-to-be sister-in-law always stick together in a family dominated by men and sports. (My FIL and two BILs are pretty awesome too though).
6. My health. Sure, like most people in America, I could stand to lose a few pounds… but I am in generally good health and am able to do all of the things I want to do. I am thankful to have never known true physical suffering.
7. My brain. While I never considered myself to be super-smart, I realize now that my mind has served me well throughout my life. I can now appreciate what an accomplishment it was to complete an engineering program at a great school and receive multiple job offers right out of college. I always worked hard and tried my best, but I know that everything I have been able to achieve would not be possible without the gift of a (pretty much) sound mind that God has given me.
8. My extended family. I am very fortunate to have a lot of close cousins and aunts and uncles on both sides of my family. Most of my best memories involve the “Cousins Club” from my mom’s side or the crazy McGovern cousins on my dad’s side. They are the kind of family that doesn’t care if you say or do something stupid or insensitive; they will tell you you’re being an idiot, and then forget about it and continue to love you. They have been there for all of the most important moments of my life and I love each and every one of them.
9. Greg’s ambition. I am very lucky that Greg has worked so hard to maintain a great job at a stable and reputable company. His success gives us the financial stability to live the way we want to, and to allow me explore different career options and take professional risks. I am so thankful that I will never be stuck in a job I hate just because I can’t afford to leave.
10. YOU! My tiny corner of the blogesphere is my happy place. It gives me a sense of creativity and satisfaction to share what is going on in our house and all of the projects attempt. I still can’t believe that people want to read what I have to write, and I get so excited about every comment, email, and page view. Thank you for visiting my humble little blog… it makes me so very happy to have you here. :)