The Gratitude List

It’s Friday the Thirteenth. But instead of focusing on bad luck (like that I forgot to blog yesterday), I want to focus on good luck. If you read my blog with any regularity, you may be aware I’ve had four relatives die in the past six month. The last was a cousin just six years older than me. And last week I spent 32 hours in 104-degree heat without power. Those things have made me aware of how much I have to be grateful for. I have my health. All my body parts work: I can ambulate, speak, hear and see. I have no dreadful physical or mental illnesses (OCD doesn’t count). I’m employed. My husband has “retired” to run his internet business from home and seems more content. My “honey do” list is being completed.

I can write stories I love. Two editors deemed my stories good enough to share them with readers. I have not regained the weight I lost with Weight Watchers. My parents and siblings are alive. My father-in-law and my husband’s siblings are alive. My daughter is employed and in her first steady relationship.

I live in a free country where I can vote, blog, express my opinions and drive across state lines without a passport. I don’t have to fear racial cleansing, war, famine or epidemics. I have plenty of food to eat, clean water to drink and clean air to breathe. I don’t live in a high crime area. My car runs. My neighbors are friendly and law abiding. They don’t fight in the middle of the night where cops have to be called to break them up. People walking their dogs carry doggie bags with them to clean up messes.

I have supportive girlfriends, writers and non writers, who enjoy my company. I have a supportive family—immediate and not so immediate.

I could go on and on. From the least significant item to the most important, I am truly blessed. But how often do I grumble, whine, or complain about this, that or the other thing? How often do I focus on things I don’t have when I am wealthy in the things that truly matter? The song Big Yellow Taxi says, “You don’t know what you’ve got till it’s gone.” If I took a few moments (or more) every day to dwell on what I have and be grateful for it, I would know what I’ve got. And I’d be more content.

And if people around the world did the same thing, the world might be more content.

Do you think about what you’re grateful for?

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6 Responses to The Gratitude List

  1. I remind myself of the things I have to be grateful for all the time. It keeps me happy when I’m tempted to let the people and things happening around me influence me otherwise. Beautiful post, Shay.

  2. Leigh Caron says:

    Every day I’m grateful. We need to spread the grateful.

  3. I have to admit, I tend to focus on things that are not positive. This is a reminder that I need to throw out the negative thoughts and look to my life for the few things that are true blessings.

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