Over the last year, I have tried to be very deliberate about being thankful. We have continued are pre-dinner ritual of going around the table and listing things for which we’re thankful. D and I, especially in the last few weeks, have been thankful—very thankful—for his new job. But even when there wasn’t that prospect, that light at the end of a tunnel, we were able to find something for which to be thankful: our house, the generosity of our families, our health, our beautiful girls. When we go around the table, Stella almost always says: “I’m thankful for our family, and that we’re here together eating.” Sometimes she’ll throw in something else—that Christmas is only a month away or that she gets to play with a friend the next day or that her Auntie Sara is visiting. Even Zoë babbles away when it’s time for her to speak: “Nanana and Stella and Zoë okey okey okey.” And then she laughs her infectious high-pitched gremlin laugh.
Today I am thankful for you, for my community of writers and readers in cyberspace. This fall, which has been long and challenging, was made less so because of your words of support and encouragement. (My grandpa is doing okay and we’re all hanging in there with him.) It was also made less hard because of your stories, the journeys and struggles you share on your own blogs.
Being a writer can be so lonely, so isolating, as can being a mother. But I don’t feel isolated because I can always turn to your words, immerse myself in your stories. Or I know you’re there, reading mine because you have left a comment or sent me an e-mail. I can’t tell you how much I appreciate this.
I am supposed to list seven things about myself and then pass the award to seven blogs. Instead of seven facts about me, though, I’m going to list seven things for which I’m thankful (in addition to the things I’ve mentioned above):
- The matter-of-fact way that Stella tells me stories, her eyebrows raised, her blue eyes wide: “Really, Mama. That really happened.”
- The way Zoë runs from one side of the house to the other and back again, legs and arms pumping like a miniature linebacker.
- That my parents both live nearby and that they love to spend time with my girls.
- Friendships old and new, virtual and in-person. What would I do without my friends?
- That my daughters know their great-grandfather.
- Teaching and my students—my wonderfully smart, talented students.
- D—for everything.
Okay, I’m going to pass this on to a few blogs I’ve been reading for a while and a few that are newer to me:
hatched by two chicks: dispatches from the nest — Erin is a really wonderful writer whose essay “East Wind” was in Creative Nonfiction a few years ago. We connected in June around the time I was weaning Zoë.
Louise Kinross writes the wonderful new blog Bloom— Parenting Kids with Disabilities, in which she highlights the stories of young people with disabilities and their parents. You don’t want to miss this amazing blog. It never fails to touch me.
mama sweat—Kara’s blog always makes me laugh, though it does sometimes make me feel guilty for not running. (I haven’t been running. Why haven’t I been running? Oh, yeah, I forgot that I don’t have time to run. Kara somehow manages it, though, and she has *four* kids.)
finding joy in simple things—Mary is wonderful, and her blog makes me think, sometimes makes me cry, and always makes me appreciate the small things in life.
heart-heal-hope is Sara’s blog about loving and losing her first child, Henry, and living with and loving her second child, Kathleen. She writes about her journey with incredible grace.
lisa romeo writes is full of wonderful author interviews and writing discussions. This is a must-read for writers and readers.
Thank you all!