Thank you. Once I read that if the only prayer we ever practice is “Thank you”, that is enough. I get it. In my world, my thankfulness overflows. I am navigating the amusement park of sobriety with all its variety of entertainment: roller coasters, plunging adventures, dips into mighty scary realms – and I am surviving every challenge. I am thriving.
Thank you for my family. Thank you for the time I get to spend with my precious little seven year old, the little human who delights me with his personality, his joy, his incredible resilience, his energy, his love, his adoration. Thank you for showing me that I must have done a thing or two right in raising his dad as I watch his fathering skills so full of tenderness, patience, and caring. Thank you for the adult relationship we have established with respect and appreciation for one another. Thank you, too, for the first human being to whom I gave birth, for the experience of changing my life when I earned the name Mother. Thank you for bringing son number one back to the United States, it is easier to connect and share our lives. Thank you for allowing me to be such a big part of each of my son’s experience and growth, for giving us open hearts and minds from which we can share all of who we are with each other, including difficult conversations. Thank you for the differences between my boys that bring immense appreciation and delight me in seeing the contrast between them, each dancing to their own music, each hearing the beat of their own drums. Thank you for my birth family, for both my brothers who taught me that I could survive adversity and sibling rivalry even when I believed it would kill me. Thank you for the full-circle of forgiveness and love that happened as my now deceased brother left this life in my arms. Thank you for a childhood rich in travel, pet love, swimming, horses, sports of all kinds, friends of many types, the love of writing, parents who adored me, experiences I never could have written for myself, an abundance of every emotion imaginable.
Thank you for the friendships in my life that remind me of who I am, of how very fortunate I am to live the life I am living. Thank you for the friendships where I can be as big as I truly am without being squashed, shamed, or wronged. Thank you for the friends who are genuinely happy for me, who share my happiness with full authenticity. Thank you for long, cherished old friendships and for blossoming new friendships. Thank you for the almost-lovers, the long-time lovers, the past lovers, for excitement and anticipation for the lovers yet to come. Thank you for memories that make me laugh hysterically, and memories that bring tenderness. Thank you for the growth I am experiencing through my encounters with others who trigger me. Thank you for reminding me that I always have a choice. I have a choice about my words, my actions, my reactions, my sharing of who I am – I am learning to be protective of my energy, discerning of the company I keep. I am growing into the woman I have always wanted to be, and I like her quite a lot.
Thank you for my love of adventure and growth, contribution and curiosity. Thank you for my chutzpah and my courage to speak up, even when it might not be wholly appropriate (see my mention of discernment, which includes discerning what comes out of my mouth, practicing “the pause”). Thank you for the connections with new people, my true and authentic joy in meeting guests, my positivity and my optimism. Being an extroverted optimist has its challenges, but I honestly can’t imagine myself any other way. Thank you for instilling in me the impetus to make things happen, the drive to make a difference. Thank you for granting me the wish-come-true of learning self love on this deeper, most authentic level and showing me it has always been the key to happiness, true “it fills every cell of my body” happiness.
Thank you for the journey. Thank you for the pain that brings compassion to the surface when I experience others suffering as I once did. Thank you for encouraging me not to hide from who I am, to bring all of my light to the darkness others show me. Thank you for reminding me that for now at least, I have only this one great big, beautiful life that deserves to be honored, cherished, appreciated, enjoyed, savored, shared. Thank you for the desire born within me to bring my absolute most impeccable self to this life feast while I continue to climb the stairway to bliss one rung at a time, full of trust and gratitude and joy. Sobriety has brought gifts to my life so unexpected, so rewarding, so indescribably delicious. Here’s to my final act, my last chapters-may I make a difference in the lives of others with tenderness, compassion, understanding, acceptance, and inspiration. I love my life. Thank you for every single minute of it.