This cartoon, posted by a friend on Facebook, spoke to me. (Typo and all.)
With American Thanksgiving this week, I’m prompted to thoughts of gratitude – a heart full of gratitude.
Love – my husband and I have been married more than 50 years and we are still in love. Yes, dear friends, I was a child when I married 🙂 Sustaining a marriage requires commitment, tolerance, shared experiences, lots of laughter, empathy, and hard work. I am grateful to have found that with Ian. Beyond the love of marriage, there is the love of children, grandchildren, and friends both near and far that also sustain me.
Family – what could be more precious than family? Whether you are together or separated by distance, there is always that invisible pull of deep, loving connection. There are stories and traditions to share along with the awesome feeling that we are connected by blood. I’m blessed with two children who amaze and delight me. As of this time, I have two grandchildren who are a source of great joy. I have two brothers and a step-sister, sisters-in-law, nieces, nephews, and cousins galore. My mother and my only aunt are still alive in their nineties.
Friends – I’m grateful for friends drawn from all different parts of my life. They sustain me in happy times and tough times. We empathize, sympathize, share stories, share experiences, share wisdom. We listen to one another, email back and forth, get together for dinners and coffees and games of golf. Sometimes we travel together or meet at conferences or maintain a connection through Zoom calls when everything else is shut down with Covid.
Writing – what can I say? When I was in the midst of a demanding career in technology and then consulting, the thought of writing a novel (let alone working on #7) was the furthest thing from my mind. So, the discovery of a passion for writing fiction and the ability to immerse myself in characters, settings and plots is a real joy. I’m grateful for discovering this second career and for all those who have helped along the way.
Health – although I have what I call ‘cranky hips’, knees that don’t allow me to get up and down like they used to, and a few minor glitches elsewhere in my body, I am a healthy woman who golfs, bikes, hikes, and occasionally exercises in a more deliberate fashion (yes, I know I should do this more regularly). Most mornings, I get up with anticipation for the day ahead and zest in my step.
Community – with a little effort, we can find community in many aspects of life. For me, communities offer a sense of belonging and identity; they enable growth and curiosity; they allow me to contribute and feel involved in something bigger than my little life. Neighbourhoods, activity groups, interest groups, charitable endeavours, book clubs – I’m grateful for these and other communities I belong to. And to the author community I’ve discovered, I also give grateful thanks.
I’m sure there are more topics.
So, when I sit down to celebrate the second of this year’s Thanksgivings (Canadians celebrate in October), I’ll be keeping these blessings in mind – and I wish the very best for you and yours in the coming years ahead.
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M.K. Tod writes historical fiction. Her latest novel, PARIS IN RUINS, is available on Amazon US, Amazon Canada, Kobo, and Barnes&Noble. An earlier novel, TIME AND REGRET was published by Lake Union. Mary’s other novels, LIES TOLD IN SILENCE and UNRAVELLED are available from Amazon, Nook, Kobo, Google Play and iTunes. She can be contacted on Facebook, Twitter and Goodreads or on her website www.mktod.com.