Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Gratitude Attitude


It doesn't take the upcoming holiday to make me think of all the things I'm thankful for. Not really. Little things pop into my head on a daily basis that have me sending up a silent prayer of thanks. I'm frequently thankful, for example, for men.

That's right. I said it. And not for the reason you all are thinking, either. (Especially you, Gerard. I know how your mind works!) I make no secret of the fact that I am height challenged. And techno-challenged. And sadly, I also have no sense of direction. It comes in handy to live with someone who wouldn't qualify as tall, but who can reach something on top of the refrigerator without dragging out the step stool. Who can open jars or stuck windows. And who has a suggestion when I call him from the land line to complain about my cell phone not working. (Ohhhh. *That's* what that button is for.) He also programs my in-dash GPS system before I set out for a trip. Maybe it's just because he wants the Suburban back eventually, but still--appreciated.

I also am frequently thankful that I don't live in the Mid East. No bias here, but I tend to think I'd do poorly in a climate where women are supposed to act quiet and subservient, at least in public. Demure is beyond me. I'd be the poster girl for public caning, so it's just as well that I was born in the U.S. where everyone loves a smart ass. Or at least can't beat them legally.

And I'm thankful for humor. How dull would life be without it? My particular brand skates perilously close to irreverent, but I also appreciate it in others, luckily for my husband. (Last night I told him, "The dog jumped up when I was cutting the meat and grabbed a big piece of fat and dragged it under the table to chew on." To which he responded, "Didn't that hurt????")

Throughout the years when all the kids were home, I said a frequent prayer of thanks that I had four boys and one girl and not vice versa. I'm hugely grateful for my daughter, and my life would be much much emptier without her. But if I'd had to raise more than one of her...prison orange is an unattractive color on *anyone*.

There's more, of course. I'm thankful for Mark Harmon and Johnny Depp ('cuz a girl's gotta dream ). For books and movies that entertain and provoke thought. Democracy. For Doctor McGillicudy's (don't knock it 'til you've tried it!). For job stability. For my family. For that new stuff that makes my eyelashes grow. My health. Strides in the plastic surgery field (there's nothing graceful about aging from where I stand). For grandchildren. For online shopping and free shipping. The Internet. And for white sand beaches edged by turquoise waters.

How about you? What tops your list of items to be thankful for this season?



24 comments:

Christie Ridgway said...

Awesome list, Kylie! And a great reminder to me as I bustle about getting ready for Thanksgiving.

I'm thankful for my brother and his family who are once again making the drive to us. For my pets, who are the only ones up with me this morning. For my husband's better back, and for the man himself, who reaches things and fixes things and loves his wife and kids above all else.

I'm thankful for books. The stories inside them that keep me so entertained. And for the authors who write them!

Emmanuelle said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Cindy Gerard said...

YOu guys are making me tear up! It's tough times out there for a lot of folks and this is the perfect time and the perfect message to remind us all that we have a lot to be thankful for.
Health comes to mind for me. Sure, I have a lot of niggly little issues I deal with and I have not so little issue that got me down for a number of years but has been behaving its self for me for quite a while. I'm VERY thankful for that! I miss my mom and dad but I'm so thankful for the wonderful memories I have of them. I miss seeing my grandkids more often but am so thankful for internet and phones and sweet little voices that say "WUV U GAMMA!" from many miles away!
Happy Thanksgiving everyone.

Emmanuelle said...

Lovely post Kylie ! I'm thankful fot a few things myself. First, for my two sons, the loves of my life. I'm also thankful for my DH, thanks to whom I can stay at home and take good care of them (and also read "a few" romance books, but that goes without saying right ? ;-).

KylieBrant said...

Christie, how great that you get to spend time with your brother! My sister will be joining us.

And books...Yes. I truly can't imagine my life without them.

KylieBrant said...

Cindy, it would always be nicer to be closer to the grandchildren, wouldn't it? Five hours for us seems like a lot, but my mom had grandchildren on both coasts, so I count my blessings.

KylieBrant said...

Emannuelle, how lovely that you get to stay home and take care of your family. My nurturing instinct has dissipated since the kids left. I told my husband I wouldn't be home until after six because of parent teacher conferences and he said, "I assume you're putting something in the crock pot so I'll have a hot meal when you're not home." He was kidding, of course, LOL. But there was a time in my life when I would have done exactly that...I guess I worried more about the kids eating than I do him!

Marilyn said...

To be honest, it's hard right now to see past the letter I just got from my attorney and find something to be grateful for. I have a roof over my head, though it's an apartment instead of the dream home we'd worked so long for. But I have a roof. I'm using a futon instead of the sofa I had hoped to buy because he's threatened to contest the divorce and cut off my alimony. But I have food. There won't be all of us around the table eating turkey this year, but #2 son will be here for lunch Thursday and he said he didn't really like turkey anyway. Who knew? #1 son won't be home. The economy kicked his butt this year, first with a 20% pay cut and then in August with a lay-off. But he was only unemployed for 2 months and he's working again.

I have troubles, but I have wonderful family and friends (including 5 wonderful women I met in a divorce recovery group) who have supported me through all this.

And I'm only 902 words away from being a 2009 NaNoWriMo winner!

Marilyn

lois greiman said...

i love you, kim. made me laugh out loud. i might also be a little in love with your dh. sarcastic humor is kinda revered in our house.

KylieBrant said...

Hugs on all that's going on right now, Marilyn. How great that you'll see one of your sons on T-Day, though. And you're right, the best friends carry us through the darkest storms. Hope yours do that for you!

KylieBrant said...

Lois, sarcasm passes for humor with us, too. Poor kids. They think it's one and the same. And with all of them home it will be like watching a constant stand up comedy show as they all try to outdo eachother!

Kathleen Eagle said...

It's been a difficult year for me in many ways. We've lost quite a few loved ones. Others of us have struggled in various ways, not the least of which has been serious illness. I'm grateful to have them all in my life, whether they're here physically or not. Good physical health is a wonderful thing, and we should enjoy it while we have it. I'm really grateful for the lives that have connected up with mine.

Okay, that sound kind of goody-goody, but bear with me. I was struck years back by the words of a wonderful writer--never met her, but I've read her a lot--who noted that most writers don't come from wealthy or "privileged" backgrounds, or at least they haven't lived an easy life. They've had problems, suffered losses, struggled. A woman once told me that she was grateful for the alcoholism in her life because it had made her a better person. Another told me that she was grateful for her lack of eyesight because she could see life in a way that wasn't visible to most people.

No, I don't go around saying, "Thanks God I've got problems." Still, times are tough, and I'm not above tough times. I'm old enough and I've experienced enough to know that if I hadn't had to struggle now and again, I'd probably be insufferable. So I'm grateful for the pain and the problems, too.

But mainly in hindsight.

Kathleen Eagle said...

Hey, Riders, I'm really, seriously, enormously thankful for this virtual convertible and the pleasure of all your company!

KylieBrant said...

Kathleen, that sounds like Father's sermon last week. Something along the lines of we wouldn't be grateful for our blessings if we didn't have burdens to make us aware of the good things in our lives.

Trish Albright said...

Kylie, thank you for making me laugh today! I'm glad you've made this far without experiencing caning or prison orange. Sorry about the dog though! Happy Thanksgiving!

Michele Hauf said...

I'm thankful for it all. Breath, is a good one. Without that, well...

Debra Dixon said...

Marilyn-- Okay, first...hugs. Big group hug from the convertible crews.

You certainly remind me that I'm pretty lucky this year. And you also remind me that Holiday Traditions are personal. Just because we used to do it one way, doesn't mean we can't turn the page and start something new and wonderful as a new tradition.

We started doing Thanksgiving, not on Thanksgiving. We had too many families so now it's T-Day Palooza from Thursday through Sunday.

Now if I can just convince one of the groups that we don't have to have a traditional bird. Maybe we should go to a great sushi restaurant!

Debra Dixon said...

P.S. Just to stay on topic, I should say that I'm grateful for sushi. I'd be even more grateful if I was eating it with Johnny Depp.

Or the Supernatural boys.

Helen Brenna said...

Marilyn, hugs from me, too. Things will get better. And Kathy, a tough year, is right.

As for me, I'm almost ashamed to say that I've knocked on wood so many times in the past several months, it isn't even funny. Life is pretty good right now.

I'm thankful I have my relative health. My family. My pets. My friends and Riding mates!

Deb, I don't like sushi, but I'll eat anything Johnny. Or Gerard. Or Clive. Or ....

KylieBrant said...

Thanks, Trish. Our dog is very thankful around the holidays, LOL. There are little people who carry their food very close to the floor, drop things, and generally see how many scraps she can eat. She'll be in heaven.

KylieBrant said...

Michelle, I once had sinus infection so bad my nostrils were completely blocked. I had never before had occasion to be thankful for 'breathing' but now am!

KylieBrant said...

Yes, Debra, if you can convince them T-Day doesn't require cooking you will be my personal hero!

KylieBrant said...

Helen--oooh Clive. I was remiss not to add him!

susan said...

I could spend hours being thankful for so much but to sum it up in a few words..all my friends all over the countryside and my health and my family. susan L.