when i was younger, my cousins and I used to sing this song at my grandfather’s church called “be grateful”. The words basically affirmed that God doesn’t promise to give us “happy” moments all the time. We won’t always have sunshine, or laughter in our lives. The concept of life itself pretty much guarantees a little pain and sorrow once in a while. Learning to be grateful first of all for the gift of life, and then being appreciative of the things that we have been given is the prescription for getting through the tough times. Of course back when we sang the song, it was pretty much because we knew we’d HAVE to sing something and that just happened to be one of the in our little group’s repertoire. At the wizened old age of 33, those words mean so much more to me. I mean on this very day. Just now, after having a major problem show its ugly little head at work which will throw me completely off schedule for the rest of the month probably, I realized how blessed I am in life. Its so weird when things like that hit you. I was pretty pissed off and went to my “therapist” Cathy who sits down the row to complain in her cube. When I got back to my desk I smiled and just felt a wave of gratitude wash over me and all of a sudden I just wasn’t really as worried about this problem anymore. My life is pretty good.I’ve had a good childhood. My parents had their domestic issues which affected me more than I realized but my relationship with each growing up was wonderful. I had my share of problems in college, being one of those nightmare daughters who got pregnant sophomore year at the age of 19 – but today my daughter is the single greatest thing that I have ever or feel I will ever accomplish. In life. Period. Relationship issues- lets not even go there, but at the end of the day I can say wholeheartedly that I am loved. Despite a lot of things, I know that. I don’t surround myself with a lot of people, but the friends I have, the few who get me and understand me and truly truly deep down accept Lesley for who she is and nothing more- I am truly grateful and blessed because I can tell you, Lesley is not the easiest person to know or love and the people who have opened their hearts to that will always be there and I’m grateful for them. I have a great job that I complain about, but looking at some of the choices that I’ve made in the past, its a wonder that I’m even here right now. I have a comfortable home which I pray daily will remain as peaceful as its been since I moved. I have a lot to be thankful for. When I look at the list of things I need, I feel that I have everything I need and a means to get most of what I want. My daughter and I are finally able to remember my mother and laugh and really treasure the good times, as we did Saturday night when cooking dinner for a houseful of hungry boys. Life is good. Life is REALLY good and I feel bad that I have spent so much time not really appreciating the things and the people that I have been blessed with. I feel bad thinking of all the times I felt I needed to be doing something else, or the times I felt I needed to be somplace else in order to REALLY be happy. I think I spent a lot of times waiting for something to “start”. From where I’m sitting today, I can honestly say that whatever it is that was supposed to “start” in order for me to really appreciate Lesley’s life, actually started 33 years ago and I don’t really have a second to lose in celebrating that.
JUST BE GRATEFUL.