The Life of Liz

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world. ~Anne Frank

Monday, November 27, 2006

Giving Thanks

To start, I'm going to nerd it up by paraphrasing the dictionary: The American Heritage Dictionary defines thankfulness as being appreciative of benefits received.
I wonder if it's possible to be really appreciative of something unless you know what it's like to go without that thing. For instance, no one appreciates life more than the person who has just had a near-death experience. So, with Thanksgiving Day right around the ol' corner, I am pondering whether or not I am actually thankful of anything at all.

I do not fully appreciate food, because even when money was stretched to the limit, and the choice was chips OR pickles - we cannot afford both!- I have never known what it's like to go to bed hungry.

I do not fully appreciate my job, because I have never been forced to slave away at a job I hate, for a scummy boss, because the alternative is to live in a box under the highway.

I do not fully appreciate shelter, because even though there are days I wake up shivering and cursing my fritzy space heater, I have never spent the night on the street huddled under a piece of cardboard for warmth.

I do not fully appreciate my family, because even during my bratty teenage years, they never abandoned or disowned me. They were, and remain, sixty of my favorite people on earth.

I do not fully appreciate love, because even in the darkest moments when my heart had been cruelly broken by some horrible wretch, I was never alone. There was always a friend's shoulder to cry on, or a loved one's voice on the other end of the line consoling and commiserating. (On a side note, did you know that excessive crying into a cell phone will cause it to temporarily stop working?)

The Eternal, in his mercy, has so blessed my life, that I am rendered unable to completely appreciate the richness of it.

And for that, I am truly thankful.


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A brand new mom trying to navigate the crazy world of mixed families, babies, and working full time. Phew! Just writing that makes me want to lie down.


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