There are times during a busy day, but most often in the late evening when everyone is sound asleep and I’m puttering around the house, that I just pause and say “thank you.” And not just one “thank you,” mind you. It’s a habit for me to say it three times, in rapid succession: thankyouthankyouthankyou. Perhaps a little OCD but it’s something I started doing when my first child was born and I would hover over her crib at night to make sure she was breathing. It was a nightly, almost hourly vigil for this new mother. There would be times when I would jump awake and realize that my daughter had not cried in several hours. I would race to her nursery and whisk her out of her crib only to hear her startled cries. Thankyouthankyouthankyou. It was this way, almost eighteen years later, when I realized I slept through her text message asking for me to pick her up from a sleepover, that she was tired and ready to come home. It was 3:30 am when I awoke and viewed her message. I raced through the hallway calling her cell phone, ready to apologize that I slept through her text and that I was on my way. When I stumbled in her room, somewhere between being half-asleep and completely panicked, I found her sleeping peacefully. Thankyouthankyouthankyou. My husband had picked her up when she couldn’t get through to me. Deep sigh.
To be honest, I’m not sure whom I’m talking to when I utter my blessing but it just feels right and it just feels necessary. And it always come out quite spontaneously. I don’t prepare it, I don’t schedule it, I just say it. And I mean it. More often than not, I find that I repeat my overwhelming gratitude when all three of my children are upstairs and sleeping soundly. They are healthy. They are safe. Thankyouthankyouthankyou. No one called me today to tell me that one of my children was seriously ill. I also didn’t learn that any of them was involved in a terrible accident. I’m grateful they walked home safely from school, that I have food to feed them and we have a strong roof over our heads. Thankyouthankyouthankyou.
This past year hasn’t been easy for way too many people. We all know stories of those hit hard by the recession, ourselves included. But it is always a good day when you are surrounded by those that are most important to you and they are happy and they are thriving. Thankyouthankyouthankyou. Nothing that I have been handed in the past twelve months even comes close to the despair and anguish of those parents who have faced devastating news regarding their children. For me, those are the true heroes of life. Those that not only handle the worst possible of news, but that they continue to function, find answers and go forth.
I describe my blog as as a “blog with a sense of humor.” I like to laugh and find the humor in parenthood. But today, I just want to feel grateful. I want to acknowledge that I feel lucky. For today, I want to embrace my good fortune that all is well underneath my roof. Nothing, and I mean nothing, means anything unless your children surround you healthy and with joy. Today, I am thankful. If you have that, you have everything.