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Department of Thanksgiving

Grace and Gratitude

I had an odd thought recently. 

I wondered if Thanksgiving wasn't in actuality an incredibly smug holiday. Leaving aside the feel-good story of the first Thanksgiving, and all its worrisome aspects, wasn't there something just a little unpleasantly self-satisfied about saying how thankful one was for whatever great or small riches one might have? Was that something I wanted to do, I wondered, when this world is full of people who have nothing, nothing at all, for which to be thankful? Wasn't my being thankful for my life just rubbing my luck in the metaphorical faces of those people?

I don't think I would have had that thought a few years ago. I think this past year has tired me physically, emotionally, and spiritually. I know that the world has always had too much of hell in it -  I've always known that, I am no naif -  but this year seemed particularly awful, with hate, fear, and ignorance nurturing every bloody proclivity toward barbarism that we humans have, and smothering all of our tendencies toward love and grace.

As I said, an odd thought. A weird one. 

But I decided that I was looking at it all wrong, that I was allowing my spiritual weariness to curdle into cynicism and hopelessness. Like the boy whose heart bore a shard of the Snow Queen's shattered mirror, which turned his every thought to darkness, I was looking at the holiday with the hard, half-blind eyes of the hopeless soul. I was a fool to do so, when I was surrounded by so much for which to be thankful. 

Being grateful for the people who I love, and who love me, isn't being selfish or self-satisfied. Being thankful that I have a little home that I love; that I have a job which still, amazingly, means something to me; that I have medical help to wield against the physical and mental illnesses I scuffle with; that I can still write about things I love; that I have Bob and Andy in my life; that I know all of you, my online friends and acquaintances - none of that is wrong. 

Let me now try to work on behalf of people who have less than I have. Let me try to pass on the love with which I am graced. Let me try to help others into a life for which they can be thankful. 

Thank you all, for being who you are, and for being in my life. 



This entry was originally posted at http://kaffyr.dreamwidth.org/389439.html?mode=reply, where there are currently comment count unavailable comments. You can comment there or here; I watch both.

Comments

( 16 comments — Leave a comment )
cathica
Nov. 27th, 2015 12:07 am (UTC)
You're very welcome. (((hug)))
kaffyr
Nov. 27th, 2015 12:43 am (UTC)
Thanks so much - the hugs are such a gift!
cathica
Nov. 27th, 2015 12:08 am (UTC)
At which point I smack myself for hitting the post button before saying, "And thank you as well."
kaffyr
Nov. 27th, 2015 12:43 am (UTC)
Heh; don't worry about it; I do that, too.
eaweek
Nov. 27th, 2015 02:49 am (UTC)
Happy Thanksgiving! Thanks for a lovely, thoughtful post!
kaffyr
Nov. 27th, 2015 03:49 am (UTC)
Thanks for reading it - and I hope you had a good Thanksgiving!

Edited at 2015-11-27 03:49 am (UTC)
ljgeoff
Nov. 27th, 2015 03:32 am (UTC)
I've been fighting grimness lately. Thank you for the love; love you back.
kaffyr
Nov. 27th, 2015 03:50 am (UTC)
Grim is hard to fight, isn't it? But I guess that when it's the hardest to fight is when it's most important to fight it. I hope your Thanksgiving was a good one, my dear - and that someone helped you out in the kitchen!
lost_spook
Nov. 27th, 2015 09:55 am (UTC)
kaffyr
Nov. 28th, 2015 12:34 am (UTC)
Thank you! May the coming holidays be just lovely for you!
liadtbunny
Nov. 27th, 2015 03:35 pm (UTC)
*hugs*
kaffyr
Nov. 28th, 2015 12:34 am (UTC)
Thanks for the hugs!
a_phoenixdragon
Nov. 28th, 2015 12:30 am (UTC)
Thank you, sweetie...

And while these are meaty thoughts, the thoughts of an honest and kind heart, those less fortunate would take no pleasure in shame of things that have come your way, that you have justly earned and worked hard for. Every story is different and even the simplest person, in means and livelihood, can find gratitude for the things they have. I'm quite sure they would want you to be thankful, as I know you are. They would want you to be proud of your accomplishments (I know I do). Every gratitude is a blessing. Every hope and aspiration is not 'over-extending' or being smug, it is the human hope, the human thankfulness that lift us all and unite us.

Thank you, sweetie. For being you. For loving, living, hoping, smiling and...just being you. I am grateful to have such a warm, wonderful person as a friend. Love you!

*HUGS*
kaffyr
Nov. 28th, 2015 12:47 am (UTC)
Thank you, my dear - I am often guilty of overthinking things, and I'm glad I have people to remind me just to accept the best interpretation of things. You're right; I'm always happy when I see other people happy with things and people in their lives, so folks probably won't side-eye me for being grateful about my own life.

It's amazing what those little shards of glass can do when they creep their way into one's heart. I just have to remember to shed the shards.
a_phoenixdragon
Nov. 28th, 2015 01:01 am (UTC)
Aww, we all do that, honey. An occasional nudge is all that is needed sometimes. :D And that fact you take joy in other people's good fortune...well, that just shows how special and awesome you are!

Indeed. Sometimes, we all look through that glass darkly. Sometimes it is even needed. But we all need smiling, laughter, warmth and hope more methinks.

And if you ever have to look up that glass again, just know there are people who love you and will help pull you back when it is needed.

*Loves*
kaffyr
Nov. 28th, 2015 01:38 am (UTC)
Thanks, my dear!
( 16 comments — Leave a comment )

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