This year I feel particularly grateful for so much. Here is a list that is by no means comprehensive:
*The health and wellness of my immediate family. I feel so fortunate for that and my heart aches with empathy for those facing serious illnesses and health challenges within theirs.
*Chris, to whom I wrote a love letter earlier this week and with whom I hope to be, ad infinitum.
*Related, my loved ones. All those family members and friends who physically and/or spiritually enveloped Chris and me as we declared our commitment to each other in marriage just a few weeks ago.
*Speck the dog who brings joy to my life every day with her little face.
*The wheels of social progression. I personally believe that I stand on the shoulders of feminist women who came before me in the fight against sexism. There's still work to do but I am grateful for the incredible amount of headway made in the last 100 years.
*The cocktail of luck, timing, and labor that yielded a job despite all odds (literally).
*Perspective and how it humbles and challenges me to be a better, more thoughtful person.
*The technological developments that make distance less daunting for families and couples. My parents marveled over how exciting it was to Skype with Chris who was in St. Barths this week for Thanksgiving. And it reminded me of how fortunate we are to have economic and technological access to such an invention.
*The ability to give back. Whether it is through donations of time, labor, and/or finances, it serves an important reminder to keep a reasonable perspective, particularly when it comes to one's own privileges. Rather than buying something superfluous for myself, I can take those funds and put them into charities or other giving opportunities. This week my university is collecting toys and clothing from the wishlists of local children who participate in the Head Start program. I chose one boy and one girl, both four years old, and had such fun shopping for them. Here are some of the gifts:
Happy (belated) Thanksgiving!