Monthly Musing – November 2019 – Being thankful
Thanksgiving isn’t something that we celebrate here in the UK, although there is a part of me that wonders if we should – the sentiment, that is, not the logistics of a practice run for Christmas just four weeks before the day itself – that sounds like a lot of work!
We always have much to be grateful for, and it’s not lost on me that the event of being thankful hasn’t made its way across the pond to us whereas the day after – Black Friday – has. I wonder what that says about us that we choose to take on a tradition of shopping rather than gratitude? Of course, there are some people who will be very grateful for the discounts that they’ll get over the weekend and there are some big savings to be had, but I’m trying to appreciate what I already have more:
A bright and frosty morning when I was out with dog, so different to yesterday when we walked with our heads down against the rain, squelching through muddy fields and me with thoughts of a cup of a tea and a dry towel filling my head for the entire walk! Today, my breath steamed in the cold air, the grass and leaves were outlined in sparkly white and the ground crunched beneath my feet. I was very thankful!
Back home, I was reminded by today’s mail delivery that I should also be thankful for our voting system and how I will be able to vote in safety for the candidate of my choice in the upcoming General Election. I might be fed up of debates, talk of tactical voting and trying to cut through the nonsense to see what really is important, but the fact remains that I am able to do that, and so many people in other countries aren’t.
So many things in pretty much every moment. That cup of tea? The dry towel? The home to come back to? The voting form? We take these things for granted in our day to day lives – or at least, I know that I do. I have to make a conscious effort every day to remember to say thank you for what I have, because it’s too easy to get caught up in what’s going on around me and then – oh, it’s another day. Gratitude is a habit, a muscle that needs exercising and it’s so easy to get out of the habit without even noticing.
We might not celebrate Thanksgiving here in the same way that it is in the US, but every year I am reminded to check whether I am still remembering to be thankful, and to be grateful for the opportunity to buy things at a discount the next day – or not, if I’ve got everything I need. And I am thankful that there are other countries in the world that do things differently so that I can appreciate the diversity and variations of culture. There’s never any shortage of things to be grateful for – and for that, I am very grateful!