Rediscovering Christmas Part 3: Thankful

Ok, so I know that the holidays are really not about the presents, how things are decorated, or any of that stuff. It should be a time of being with family and being thankful. I have been focusing the past few weeks on wanting to be jolly and give my kids a good Christmas while being joyful doing it. However, as I have mentioned, I am not a holiday person, not just this holiday, but all holidays in general. So I have been on a quest to get some Christmas Spirit.

I have thought about the things that gave me joy as a child. I have thought about traditions with my children. I have been making plans for Christmas to keep me busy so I cannot reflect on the things that make me sad about this time of year. I have even been staying away from the things that really make me grumpy this time of year such as shopping and large crowds.

However, this week, I have been sick, and it has derailed some of my plans. So I was thinking that one of the ways to get me on track was to stop and think about everything big and small that I am thankful for. The last few weeks have been difficult, but I really have a lot to be thankful for.

I am thankful for my family. I have two stinkers beautiful children who I absolutely love. They also give good hugs which is a plus. I have two wonderful exchange students that have really become part of the family. They even enjoy the chaos that is my house. I am thankful for my husband. Things have not been easy for us, but I love him, miss him when he is gone and appreciate that he believes in me, especially when no one else does.

I am thankful for my extended family. I do not get to see my parents, siblings, nieces and nephews as much as I want, but I love them all. It has not always been an easy road, but I really am thankful for them all and love them very much. I am thankful I still have my parents. However, I think after the health issues that have happened over the past few years, I am hoping that it is smooth sailing from here. Seriously, I don’t like being 500 miles away when something goes wrong, but I am thankful that I have them.

I am thankful for things like heat. This is the first year in a couple of years where we were able to purchase oil for the furnace before winter and even have it on at this time of year. I will not take it for granted that we are warmer in our house than we have been for quite a while.

I am thankful for my husband’s job even though his job is a hard thing for me to deal with. I hate that he is gone all the time. I hate that he wasn’t home for Thanksgiving and won’t be home until after New Year’s. I am jealous of my friends who talk about date nights and watching movies with their husbands since watching a movie with my husband consists of us watching the same show and chatting through Facebook during the movie because my husband’s cell phone reception is not so good. I am thankful my husband has a job and that it is in his field. I am thankful that his company treats him well and that we are finally financially okay. It is nice to not panic every month about how to pay the bills.

I am thankful for my friends who know me so well even though some of them live far away. Good friendships are hard to find. I think we sometimes take them for granted.

I am thankful for the opportunity to live out one of my dreams. I started my own business at a time that probably could have been better. However, I have learned so much and am still learning. I have met a lot of interesting people and have gotten to give a lot of kids some great birthday memories. While I am often frustrated and still trying to figure it all out, doing this has given me hope. After my accident, I was so bitter about what my life could have been like and how I could have done something with my life. This has helped me work through it and realize that there is so much I can do, and that if I put my mind to it, I can do a lot more if I try.

That is my list so far. It is helping me put things into perspective. If you are stressed out this season, remember to stop and breathe. If that doesn’t work, think about what you are thankful for as well.

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