So today is the third day of my “Thirty Days of Thanks” – why did I create this personal blog tradition? It started more than four years ago. My mother was diagnosed with breast cancer in August 2011, and as she faced the journey, I was among those who were often taken aback by her positive outlook. As we talked that winter, Mom told me one thing that had kept her encouraged. She was given the challenge to find five things she was thankful for each day. Even when dealing with chemotherapy fatigue, there were always positive pieces of life: sunrises, cards in the mail, smiles… one doesn’t have to look far.
Why did I feel the need to adopt this habit? As I face the ins and outs of life with MS, summer can be both positive and negative (heat is not a good thing). With beauty that summer does bring, I can personally use a time that forces me to focus on blessings. My fourth year of this July journey of thanks, I hope it also helps in my life journey, as I continue to discover where my next steps will point.
So now, I’ll take a day to find five real blessings, ones I may often take for granted.
5 Everyday Blessings
- Water – Clean water, hot or cold, available in my own home is an amazing gift!
- Fresh food – I can go to a local store and find all sorts of food for our family. Fresh lettuce, strawberries, pasta, bread, meat of all sorts – it’s really quite staggering.
Bird feeders – We don’t have a pet at this time, but our windows give us great view of our little outside world, and I love being able to watch the feathered friends and listen to the birdsongs.
- Vegetable garden – The store is nice, but even better is a fresh salad made from lettuce grown in our own garden. And herbs and garlic and even carrots… cool stuff!
- Oven – At the press of a few buttons, we have an oven that can bake food (or polymer clay). We can set the temperature, watch the time, and it’s rather amazing. No wood, no fire, no smoke (usually) – a blessing indeed!
A difficult thing about creating these little lists is deciding what to choose. Many days will be on the “random” side, like today, but my goal is to have five unique blessings each day – so this month should find 150 different blessings. I’d love to challenge each of you also to take time to consider the day’s blessings – we do each have a lot to be thankful for!