Today I am thankful.
The skies have been grey and temperatures frigid for the last three weeks.
Dirty socks and sweatshirts cover my kids’ floors.
There was too much yelling and not enough hugging today before the kids left for school.
Our bathrooms are embarrassing, and the laundry smells stale in the washer.
We’ve totally dropped the ball on Owen’s Moon Project homework. We still have to find a biography for his reading assignment.
I can barely squeeze past the junk in our overflowing garage. Calling the Purple Heart for pick-up has been on my to-do list for days.
The back yard is an ugly mix of melting snow, mud, and never-raked leaves, which means muddy dog paws every time he goes out.
I need to send my Nana more cards and letters.
I haven’t called my parents enough.
I haven’t Facetimed my sisters like I said I would.
I’m anxious about taxes–already–because I am embarrassed to hand over my pile of unorganized receipts, invoices, and papers to my accountant. And I promised myself I’d be better this year.
I’m nervous that our chick eggs won’t make it. We spent hours yesterday chasing down our friends with power so we could the incubator at 99.5°. Out of seven eggs, how many will hatch?
Our favorite neighbors are moving this spring. Two homes on our street are in foreclosure.
I barely recognize my body anymore. I need to exercise more and eat fewer Cheetos.
I’m tired. Really tired.
My husband is carrying so much new stress this year. I worry for his heart every day.
I need to do more to show my nieces and nephews how much I love them.
I need to be a better friend. Why don’t I call, email, text–check in–with those people who have been staples in my life for so long?
Maddy wants to read The Hunger Games and watch Pretty Little Liars–and I’m just not ready.
I never make my kids floss or help them brush their teeth anymore. I have to go to the dentist.
We don’t have much in our savings account. We should have more in our kids’ college accounts.
I worry that I am not doing enough to prepare our kids for this digital world.
Every, single plant I’ve ever had dies within a month. I have two sitting here now that need to be trashed.
I wonder if I should keep blogging and writing or head back to the classroom.
I don’t know anymore how to handle our youngest, and I worry I’m screwing her up–and our family up–for the long run.
I need to refocus. Write down goals.
Make missed deadlines.
Take photos, follow my editorial calendar, write blog posts, edit photos, schedule tweets, updates, pins, and likes.
This. Is. Hard.
But really? I am thankful.
I am thankful because I am here.
I am thankful because I will move through the angry winter and will greet my three little loves with smiles and hugs when I pick them up after school.
I am thankful because one day the bathrooms will be cleaned and eventually the laundry will be done.
I am thankful because tonight we’ll catch up with Owen’s Moon Project, and this weekend we’ll hunt down a biography. Somewhere.
I am thankful because I have a garage and the space for extra stuff and a phone to call Purple Heart and the internet connection to find the phone number.
I am thankful for a soupy, swampy back yard where I’ve watched my kids learn to walk, swing, and slide, and where I will continue to watch them grow and play. I am thankful for a sweet and fuzzy dog whose muddy paws I will clean until I have to carry him indoors myself.
I am thankful that my Nana will forgive me for unsent letters and not enough calls and that she’ll welcome me any time–any time–to come over, sit with her, and listen to her stories. Even if she doesn’t realize she’s repeating them more times than I wish.
I am thankful that I will see my parents and sisters soon–whenever that may be–and that we will eat lots, drink more, hug hard, and laugh loudly.
I am thankful for my job that has allowed me to have all of these wandering receipts and contracts and forms from travel and opportunity. And I’m thankful that I have this year, today even, to try to be better at this part of my business.
I am thankful for my job that has allowed me to create something out of nothing.
I am thankful for friends and readers and subscribers and followers. People who I have come to know and love from near and far who actually like what I write and appreciate what I share.
I am thankful for our neighbors who keep an eye on us from across the street, who surprise us with home-cooked meals and goodies from El Salvador and who call me when I forget to put my garage door down.
I am thankful to own a home in a neighborhood where we can walk to school, walk to the pool, and walk to the park.
I am thankful for my stubborn, strong body that has carried me across continents, through chapters, and into parenthood. I am thankful for every single mile I’ve walked and for the miles I have yet to go.
I am thankful for sweatpants, glasses, cozy slippers, and at-home movie nights.
I am thankful for my patient, smart, and gentle husband who holds my hand, laughs at my jokes, and reminds me to turn up the music and dance more.
I am thankful for each one of my nieces and nephews–their smiles, hugs, runny noses, laughs, and tiny voices.
I am thankful for my elementary school friends who have known me so long they are a part of my heart. I am thankful for my college friends who shared a part of my life that was crazy, confusing, and unforgettable. I am thankful for my mom friends who are walking with me through a part of my life now that is harder than I ever imagined but that is more fun than I ever thought it could be.
I am thankful that today I could call any one of them. I am thankful that in a heartbeat we can hear each other’s voices and pick up where we left off.
I am thankful that I have a gorgeous daughter who is determined and strong and wise and kind.
I am thankful that I have an amazing son who is sensitive and sweet, aware, and always thinking.
I am thankful that I have another incredible daughter who is smart, creative, cautious, and loving.
I am thankful for our perfectly imperfect life.
I am thankful that my dentist will still schedule our appointments, even though I openly admit to not making my kids floss.
I am thankful for our jobs and my husband’s steady income. I am thankful that we can put food on the table and clothes on our backs, buy new shoes for the kids and replace lost mittens.
I am thankful for student loans.
I am thankful that I know where to go to get information about keeping my kids safe online, and I’m am thankful that I still have time to help them.
I am thankful that my mom has a green thumb and that the plants at her house are beautiful. And even though I can’t keep my own, at least I can see them when I am at her house.
I am thankful that I have the choice to keep blogging or to go back to the classroom.
I am thankful that our family has help with the issues we’re facing and that the road looks brighter ahead.
I am thankful that I have deadlines to miss and emails to answer.
I am thankful that I have a great equipment to use for my work and that I know how to use it.
I am thankful.
I am thankful for yesterday. I am thankful for today.
And I am thankful for tomorrow.
Let’s be thankful.
Let’s continue to celebrate our friend.
Let’s do what we can, no matter what that may be.
- donate: Inflammatory Breast Cancer Research Foundation
- support: Lymphedivas
- support: Cricket’s Answer for Cancer
thank you to the talented Marty Long for this song