By Suzanne Sparrow Watson
It’s getting to be that time of year … when we blow right past Thanksgiving and start hanging the Christmas or Hanukkah lights. Traditionally, of course, before Target and Walmart took over the holidays, Fall was a time for people to take stock of their lives and give thanks for their blessings. A friend recently told me about a holiday tradition that I thought it was quite ingenious: at every holiday dinner each person must say what they are grateful for, using the first letter to spell out the holiday. So in other words, their dinner gets a lot colder at Thanksgiving than Easter. I never was a faithful viewer of the “Oprah” show but watched it enough to know that she encourages people to keep a daily journal listing everything that they are grateful for that day. Heck, I can’t do anything every day except brush my teeth and eat, so keeping a Grateful Diary is out of the question. The concept, however, is intriguing. So this week I decided to combine the two ideas and in that spirit create a GRATITUDE list for the season.
G – Girlfriends. Where would I be without them? Together we laugh, we cry, we hack our way around a golf course, and we create. They are, in short, my sanity.
R – Relatives. I have a wonderful family and I know I’m very lucky that we like and love each other. NOT ONCE have we had to have police intervention at a family gathering.
A – Alan, my husband. He gets me through good times and bad … and loves me even when I don’t have any make-up on.
T – Tea. Sometimes there is just nothing like a good “cuppa” to get me through the day. And since I discovered FOAM at Whole Foods, it’s even better with that piled on top.
I – Inspiration. I am surrounded by very imaginative women who are artistic and talented in ways I never will be. But they inspire me to improve whatever I am doing.
T – Time. Somehow it seems I never have enough of it. How did I ever work? Now I love it when an appointment gets cancelled. There is nothing like the gift of TIME !
U – Unburdened. As I’ve gotten older I no longer feel like I “have” to do stuff. I now say “no” when I feel like it. This is probably why older people are deemed “cranky”.
D – Dash the Wonder Dog. Duh.
E – Elusiveness. I am a literal thinker (I’ve taken the test on Facebook to confirm this) but I love that big parts of my life are elusive. When you think you no longer need to try new things – and fail – life becomes too predictable. It’s always good to have something beyond your grasp – like losing 10 pounds.
That’s my list for this year. Next year it could be something entirely different although I suspect that, with good behavior, Alan and Dash will be on it. Although Dash really is the only “shoe-in”. As word games go, I thought this was a good exercise to go through. I may even try the holiday version for Thanksgiving (family members, be warned!). I still don’t think I’ll ever be disciplined enough to do a daily Gratitude Diary, but it sure feels good to stop once in a while to take stock in all of the things, and especially the friends, that make life good.
Wishing you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving. As for me? I’m off to think of a word that starts with “T”.