Tonight is "Thanksgiving Eve" and since I don't do any actual cooking for the big meal, I have some time to reflect on what my family is giving thanks for this year. I've noticed a lot of my facebook friends have been listing one thing a day that they are thankful for all month, but since I am an incurable procrastinator I am listing mine all together at pretty much the last possible minute.
I am feeling pretty sentimental today so bear with me :)
I am so thankful for my husband. He is a man that has survived both cancer and living with me and still manages to keep a smile on his face :) He has faced challenges that I can't even imagine and doesn't share his story much because he worries that people will feel sorry for him. I share his story because I am proud of him and of what he has accomplished. I am lucky to have him because he makes up for my short comings in so many ways. He has patience when I don't and he has a logical side that I envy whenever my mind seems to be too flighty for the real world. He loves me enough to forget that I had bangs as thick as a down comforter when we were seat mates in the sixth grade. He loves me enough to know immediately that when I am making Malt-o-meal for dinner, it has been a bad day. I love most of all that he gets my sense of humor and even finds it funny once in a while. He has seen me at my sickest, my meanest and my most scared and he loves me.
I am thankful for my boys. They are the children we never knew that we could have. Pregnancy is rarely a guarantee for anyone and I know that it was most definitely an uncertainty in a lot of people's minds for us. Getting pregnant was a blessing, being pregnant and keeping myself and a baby healthy was a daunting and dangerous journey for me. Twice. I am thankful for medical advancements that made it even possible because not too many years ago it would not have been. I am thankful for not just one but two healthy boys and the fact that I got them here and am still all in one piece myself. Thankful. I am blessed to have a mom that was a wonderful example to me of how to raise your family and enjoy them at the same time.
Before I was a mom I had experienced happiness in my life, a lot of it. But once these two little men entered the scene I realized something I had not truly experienced before, Joy. Every smile I get to witness, every time a sweet boy runs to me with his arms out and every time I get to hold them while they sleep, I am experiencing God's grace in the most tangible way and I am so thankful.
I am thankful for our every day life. The good, the bad and the ugly. I am thankful that our house is almost always full of laughter, although most of this comes from laughing at ourselves :) I have the funniest family on the planet and they are constantly teaching me through example that if we can laugh at a problem, it seems easier to solve. Our life is not a perfect one and there are moments on a daily basis when I find myself frustrated, stressed or upset about something that at that one moment seems to be the most critical thing in the world. But, those moments are part of our story as well and so I am also thankful for them. I am thankful for a boy that has a heart as big as his imagination, who is so proud of his baby brother that he wants to shout it out to every stranger we meet and advertise his affection with matching shirts. I am thankful for a little boy that has fallen into the role of baby of our family with an open mouth, open arms and a perma-smile. He is a little guy that loves music in his soul and is already a loyal companion for his big brother. I am thankful for the glimpses of their dad that I get to see in both of them.
I just finished reading a great book called, Have a Little Faith. In it the author is interviewing an aging man of God in order to prepare for his eulogy. He asks the Rabbi if he has discovered the secret to happiness and the Rabbi says yes. He says the key to happiness is simple, be satisfied and be grateful. That's it. Today I am both.