This time of year brings loads of ways to show you’re thankful. Like those 30 days of thankfulness Facebook posts. You know the ones – your friends try to come up with something different every day that they are thankful for. I actually think they are pretty great because everyone should realize that they definitely have something to be thankful for but sometimes I feel as if they’re a little contrived. As if sometimes, there’s entirely too much time spent thinking about “what the heck am I going to post about today?!” I mean, it’s 30 DAYS of these posts. Makes me wonder how much genuine thankfulness is happening.
I am certainly aware that I have plenty to be thankful for but, to be truthful, it’s difficult to recognize it at times. Work is stressful, life is busy, there is loads of cooking to be done, travels to be planned, houses to be decorated, and money to be spent. It’s super easy to get caught up in the whirlwind that is the holidays. Who has the time to truly see what there is to be thankful for?
The other morning, after a workout, I swung through Starbucks on my way to work. I generally make coffee and take it with me in my thermos but I had left it at work the day before. Normally, I’m not down with spending $5 on a cup of coffee (grande, please!) but I’ve discovered I actually like the taste of coconut milk in coffee and they don’t have that at 7-11. They should fix that. Or, maybe I should just remember my thermos. Anyway, I ordered my latte and I was hanging out, waiting, and kind of zoning out, lost in my own thoughts and dramas.
In the distance, I heard, “are you Jennifer?” I snapped out of it and said yes. The barista finished putting the lid and that little cardboard heat protector wrap thingy on my cup and handed it to. It took me a second or two to realize she asked me a question as she handed my coffee. I had to ask her to repeat what she said. Turns out she asked me what I was thankful for.
She caught me off guard with that question. I’ll be honest – I had been mentally dealing with a stressful situation and I certainly wasn’t in a positive mood even after a great workout. I may have actually stammered a bit. And then, reality set in and I didn’t really have to think about my answer. I’m not sure but I’m pretty sure I was grinning ear to ear when I said, “my new grandson!”
Well, that answer surprised her a little (as evidenced by the fact that she had to scrape her jaw off the floor. guess I don’t look like a Nana.) and we talked about him for a minute. She smiled and wished me a happy Thanksgiving, I wished her one in return, and I left in a glow of happiness.
There was never a doubt that I’m thankful for my grandson and my family but I got caught up in some negativity and was letting it affect me and push aside my thankfulness.
When was the last time someone actually asked YOU what you are thankful for? It’s an interesting question to be asked. What would you say? You don’t have time to think about it and craft a perfect answer. What would your first response be? The question is a little like a gift, actually. A bright spot. A ray of sunshine coming through the window and warming things up. Except that window is your heart. Cheesy? Maybe. True? Definitely.
So, my friends, what are YOU thankful for? What’s the first thing you thought of when I asked that question? And, thankfulness doesn’t end when Thanksgiving is over and we’ve all started decorating for Christmas. Share the love and ask the question. Not just to friends but to strangers – the bagger at the grocery store, the checker at Target, the guy pushing some random lotion on you at the mall….hey, they always say, “can I ask you a question?” right? Well, ask them one too! I’m pretty sure listening to the answers you get will make your day pretty great.
Oh, and in case you didn’t know, I’m thankful for you. I really am. Thanks for swinging by and reading and commenting (or not) and giving me a forum to share. I hope each and every one of you has a happy Thanksgiving. <3