Saturday, November 24, 2007

Counting my blessings

Do you remember Bing Crosby crooning to Rosemary Clooney....
When I'm worried and I can't sleep,
I count my blessings instead of sheep.
And I fall asleep, counting my blessings.

Well, my blessings wake me up! Witness the time stamp on this post.
Usually when this happens, I get up and pour it all out into a spiral bound notebook. I've got quite a few. But I also realized that this year I never really acknowledged Thanksgiving DAY, except to talk about where we ate! How crass is that?

OK, my family always celebrated Thanksgiving a day or so late anyway. Thanksgiving was always a travel day to the Hope family reunion in Oklahoma, and we'd usually have Thursday lunch at a Dairy Queen in Snyder, Texas. If it was open. Our big celebration was on Friday or Saturday when about 100 relatives would finally get together.

So it's .... what day is this? Saturday! OK I'm not TOOOOO late. The fact is that every day has been a day filled with gratitude and thanks for the last several months. And truth to tell, it was gratitude, daily, minute by minute acknowledgement of God's love, care and protection, that brought me through the hard and painful times before the whole brouhaha this past September. Gratitude, praise and thanksgiving have just become so integrated into our lives lately, that it seems almost incongruous to say, OK, this special day we're going to be thankful. Every day has been a special, joyfilled gift -- that I am officially acknowledging right now, digitally, rather than with pen and paper.

Here's a list of the most immediate things I'll count as blessings before heading back to bed:

I'm grateful....
  • That my long time friend Patricia and her friend John made it into Puerto Vallarta late yesterday afternoon, and there were no glitches in picking them up.
  • That it was daylight almost until we got back to Guayabitos and I didn't have to drive that road in the dark.
  • That Patricia is still around! She's coming out of a soul-trying few years. The criminal trial for her former husband was resolved this past September. He was sentenced to fewer months in jail than she spent in the hospital after he tried to kill her almost two years ago.
  • That she looks radiant and happy with her new life, and that she's transforming what could have been a life-scarring circumstance into a Life-sharing opportunity. She's now a spiritual and public activist, working for a change in attitude and response to domestic violence in New Mexico.
  • That we have even just this weekend together to renew a friendship that began almost thirty years ago when I enrolled in her French class way back in Midland, Texas.
  • That my mom in Lubbock, Texas, had ALL her grandchildren together for a few days before T-Day. Two sets of them were without parents at the time, so she really had a great time focussing entirely on the kids. That was like a nano-second in the whole scheme of things, but a particularly special time for her.
  • That....dare I say this? That Home Depot is now open in Puerto Vallarta. You cannot imagine what a difference that makes in the lives, not only of American and Canadian immigrants building houses and condos left and right, but of Mexicans in the lower economic levels. When we got here a year ago, I couldn't find a little table lamp around here for under the U.S. equivalent of $30. My housekeeper was amazed when I brought back little reading lamps from the States and how little they cost. Home Depot has scads of little lamps. And big ones. And lots and lots of other stuff that makes life better and homes more liveable -- at China-produced U.S. prices. The customers there were Mexican, and they were having the time of their lives.
  • That we're surrounded by friends here, that we have friends in far places, that I saw many of them in Boston last week, and that I'm going to see a lot of them in California this coming week when I go back for friend Cynthia's wedding on December 2. I can't begin to count how many blessings and how many friends! So I'd better stop or I'll be awake forever.... 'night all!

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