This year will forever be ingrained in my mind. The year my children were homeschooled. The year my grandmother died. The year my dog died. The year my husband struggled to find work. The year my mother sold my childhood home.
It’s been a challenging year. And it’s been downright draining.
But, I’m still thankful.
I’m thankful for the slow down. There is nothing like looking at a blank calendar and spontaneously deciding what to do each day. While I drank more wine in the past 8 months than I have my entire life, I have also played more games with my children than I have in their lifetime.
I’m thankful that my children have made new friends in these trying times. We have a small neighborhood and a couple of parents have opted to allow our children to play outside together. The neighborhood kids now run to each others houses, knock on doors and ask their friends to play. We’ve brought back the 80s. I am grateful my children get to experience some of what I did.
I’m thankful my mother seems to have embraced this new phase in her life. She made the tough decision to sell the home she’s lived in for 33 years. She stopped dying her hair, has a beautiful head of gray and is living in a townhome nearby. I’m proud of her for taking that brave step and thankful she is enjoying her life. I’m thankful she’s healthy.
I’m thankful we had a big celebration in January for my grandmother’s 98th birthday. We didn’t know we would lose her a couple months later to the coronavirus.
With death comes new beginnings. Two weeks after my grandmother passed away, we had to put my 13 year old dog down because of cancer. He was my best friend, the most loyal companion anyone could ask for. I had him before I met my husband. He helped me through many tough times. The loss of my dog broke me in ways I didn’t think possible. The love we had for him was so strong, we adopted another dog a couple months later. I am happy to have rescued a 2 year old black and tan coonhound. She is very well adjusted now and the children adore her.
I’m thankful to have grown closer with my family. Spending all this time together has allowed me to understand my children more. I’ve grown closer to my husband. We hug more. We love more. It may be cheesy but I am loving every single minute of it. Last night I went out to dinner with a friend. This morning, my husband and son said they had trouble falling asleep because I wasn’t home. This is new behavior and reflective of how close we’ve all become.
Clearly there are many things I am thankful for this year. I choose to remember these things. I choose to focus on the positive. Yes it’s been a trying year. It’s been full of challenges and hardship. My heart breaks for those I know who have lost loved ones, and for the loved ones I’ve lost. But I am opting to move forward.
Wherever you are for Thanksgiving, try to think of the good things this year brought. Focus on those. Enjoy the time with your family and close friends and be mindful of those that don’t get to do the same. Take the pictures. Drink the wine. Enjoy each moment. If there’s anything this year has shown us, it’s to enjoy the present.