Another Monday, another spin around the sun, and the first Monday in November.
This year is just blurring on by, isn’t it? You know what this means right?
Full on Christmas coming at us now.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not anti Christmas. It’s my favorite holiday and I go all out for it.
I just want my turkey first….. and pie.
I want those tasty dishes that seem to be extra delicious on Thanksgiving. I want to smell those amazing smells of the day as my often, loud and wonderfully goofy family shows up to eat, watch football and celebrate a day of giving thanks for all we have.
I want that before I’m propelled into the Christmas whirlwind.
I want that set aside day of focusing on thankfulness.
Reasons to be thankful
Do we need to be reminded? I think, sometimes, we get so set in our lives we don’t really take time to focus on all we’ve been blessed with.
I was at the stop sign the other day and a local homeless woman was in her chair as she usually is. She is often just down the street at Starbucks sitting by the drive way but has changed up her location again ( she moves between both areas) it is known she has mental issues. It is also known she supposedly chooses this life.
I don’t know much except she’s a staple in that area. I greet her when I walk up to get my coffee, I will not look through her and pretend she isn’t there as many do.
But on this day, she was seated at the stop sign.
As I waited for the car in front of me, I couldn’t help but notice her, really see her.
Head in her hand holding her sign, her face red from days of sitting in the sun, a cigarette loosely held, her worldly possessions around her, it was her face that caught me.
The look of someone holding back emotion or trying not to cry.
It took everything in me to not turn around and go back and ask, are you ok? Except, with her mental instability, you just don’t know what you will get.
In those moments so much was impressed on me.
You think you’ve had a hard year, but you’ve not had hard like that homeless woman on the corner hard.
I thought about the nice car I was driving, wearing nice clothes. I thought about my beautiful home that protected and sheltered me. The abundance of food we had, the things that made my life comfortable, my family that surrounded me, and the simple luxuries I had. I thought about my husband and how much he has been brought through and how our needs are always met.
I felt humbled in that moment. And thankful
The thoughts continued to flow….
Your hard isn’t the family divorcing, ending what they have known. Your hard isn’t the young mother who lost a twin, or a parent watching their child continue the path of addiction or a family member dealing with alcohol addiction, or a widow grieving their partner
All situations I’m personally aware of.
We all have our levels of hard to deal with, right?
November marks a year since my husband was told he had two types of cancer. To say this year has been a new level of “hard” is putting it mildly. There have been ups and downs and moments that have overwhelmed me leaving me feeling like I couldn’t breathe. Throw in a virus, him being unable to work right now, Dr appointments, chemo treatments, constant dancing around with insurance and the daily shifting of life, it can make the strongest person feel weak at any given moment.
Yet, that thought bounced through my head.
Your hard isn’t like hers. Your life, while it has been difficult, painful even, is good.
We all have our own version of hard
We do right? Struggles, pain, suffering, hardships. They may look different but we all have that road to walk on some level.
I firmly believe how we approach it has a huge impact on the rest of our lives. Has this year been easy?
Have I been amazingly blessed? Absolutely.
Do I choose, look for all the good I have in my life even if it is hard? I do.
As we go into November, a month in which we have a day set aside to think of all we’ve been blessed with and give thanks for those blessings, I choose to set my sights there.
So stand down Christmas.
I want my turkey and pie. I want more mashed potatoes than I should eat. I want breakfast with my family still in jammies with messy hair crammed around the table eating the pastries I made. I want to enjoy the food, the laughter, the controlled chaos, and most importantly, my tribe. The beautiful people I’ve been given to share this life with.
Life is hard. If there weren’t hard times we wouldn’t deeply embrace the good. Life is made of both.
I am thankful and abundantly blessed. I hope you too, even as you may deal with difficulties or uncertainty will also celebrate the good and the blessings you have as well.
And hey, go ahead and have another piece of pie. 😉