At this time of year it's natural to reflect on what we are thankful for in our lives. Gratitude, is the quickest, most powerful way I know to lift up my spirits and place them in a feeling of secure comfort. Here is a glimpse into a moment of my gratitude...
Transported back in time
Last autumn we were driving through the rolling flint hills of eastern Kansas, going home for Thanksgiving. As we crossed over the bridge, the banks of the Kansas River seemed wider than they did when I was a child. Pulling up into the driveway, I noticed that my parents' house appeared smaller than it had when I was a child, but my size and perspective were smaller in those days. As I walked through the door I was met with the scent of delicious cooking. The warmth in my parents' faces combined with their loving hugs instantly transported back to the time of my youth. Even though I am a grown woman with a family of my own, I was amazed at how quickly I felt twelve years old again.
Calm in the chaos
As the day progressed, my entire extended family arrived in stages, our numbers adding up to about 30 people and five dogs. My mother, who is the definition of grounded and calm, has always had a way of creating enough food to feed everyone continuously and effortlessly throughout the day. Her way of being is truly an innate skill, honed from 50 years of experience in raising nine children. A buzz of chatting, laughing, children running, dogs barking, and all sorts of chaos brought back the memory of life in a big family.
The gift of family
Recognize the gift of your family. No matter what combination of "family" members you come together with this Thanksgiving, find something good in everyone. Families can be challenging, so remember to be grateful and see each family member with eyes of compassion. Recognize this Thanksgiving holiday as an opportunity to rise to any family challenge and reap all the sweet benefits.
Published On: November 22, 2008