In our society, we count a lot of things. We count money, pounds, calories, and steps—all these things we deem important and give our time, energy, and power. However, what we often fail to count are our blessings. In this weird week between Christmas and the New Year, counting my blessings is my focus. My blessings are abundant. Often, I take them for granted and don’t consider them blessings at all. Our blessings become commonplace; we assume it is just our life and how things are for us. However, when we take the time to stop and look around when we see things with fresh eyes, we find our cup overflows.
The winter holidays can be filled with sadness. Sometimes, it’s easier to focus on what we don’t have rather than what we are blessed with in our lives. However, if one can pause, look deeply, and remove that heavy weight of sadness, one can find blessings at every turn. For example, sometimes I slip into that pool of despair and think about the loved ones I have lost, the family who is estranged, and the friends who have disappointed me, which can be overwhelming. But then, I hear my bean laughing with her dad; I get a funny message from Jenna, Morgan gives me an update on her pregnancy, Jane sends me an unexpected card, Monica, Marie, Debbie, Trisha, Christina, Sherry, Brandi, or Kristen send me a message finishing with “Love You!” or I receive a Christmas card from a member of our soap family with a kind message and encouraging words, I remove myself from that drowning sadness and realize I am blessed.
Jenna and Morgan surprised Eric and me with the most creative, hilarious, and thoughtful gift imaginable. They spent an afternoon conducting a photo shoot when we were out of town for The Shaker Woods Festival. They created photographic parodies of our life and turned them into calendars for us. Jenna sported bib overalls and a bald cap imitating The Bibbed Wonder and Morgan…well, I think she was supposed to be me, but she wore camo bib overalls and a mullet wig. I wear camo skinny jeans with a cute black sweater and ankle boots, but I don’t have anything in Realtree camo or bib overalls, for that matter. I’m not sure I want to know how Morgan parodies me. Is it the wig representing my bad hair? Let us not go there. Anyhow, I laughed until I cried when I looked through their creation. The time energy, creativity, and thought that went into making this calendar is priceless.
I could wallow in loss, sadness, betrayal, or anger, but when my life is filled with such caring, considerate, loving, and supportive people, why would I? Sometimes, dear reader, you are not meant to follow the tribe you were born into and share a bloodline. Sometimes, your tribe and your family are those your soul connects with, and your heart recognizes them as your tribe. I love my tribe fiercely. If you are reading this blog, know you are part of that tribe. Thank you for blessing me, and know I count you as one of my blessings.
On this sun-filled heat wave of 40+ degrees in December, stay safe, be smart, count your blessings, love your tribe fiercely, and keep washing your hands. Spreading germs is not love; it’s gross; I’m just putting that out there…insert a wink.