How’s everyone’s Thursday? Mine was long, another early start, another busy day. I’m in a much better place than I was last Thursday though. I’m tired, don’t get me wrong and I’m still a little stressed, but nowhere near as bad as I have been for the last few weeks. I’m still no closer to catching up with everything at work, but I’ve found the last two days my concentration has returned and I’ve been achieving more.
I’ve got one more training run left before the City2Surf. Tomorrow morning is my last chance to prepare for it, before giving myself a break the day before. I’m starting to get quite excited about it! I’m nowhere near my goal of running the entire 14 km, but I’m a lot closer than I was last year so I’m hoping for a better time. The weather report isn’t too good though, really hoping the rain holds off.
I wanted to talk today about gratitude. For the longest time, I was an ungrateful person. I expected way too much from everyone and everything but I wasn’t willing to put in any effort in return. I spent my days angry at the world for it not being what I wanted it to be.
I knew there were people out there with less than me and I did feel bad for them, but I genuinely had no idea how lucky I was.
Unfortunately I think this is a trap a lot of us fall into these days. Maybe not as extreme as I used to be, but I see so much expectation for so little return, so many complaints, so many ‘first world problems.’ I believe that term might have started as a joke but there are certainly plenty of people out there who feel genuine annoyance over things that we are actually lucky to have.
Now, I am grateful for a lot of things.
I am grateful to wake up every morning. Some are harder than others, but at the end of the day I’d much rather wake up tired or flat than not at all.
I am grateful to have a roof over my head. It’s not a nice place, it’s not worth the rent we pay and it’s cold, but it’s so much better than the alternative of being homeless.
I am grateful to have a job. Plenty of people don’t have that luxury. I’m especially grateful to have a job that I love and for a company that cares.
I am grateful to have friends and people who support me. I haven’t always made a lot of effort with my friends so I’m grateful that they stick around.
I am grateful for Zombie. He is supportive, encouraging and showers me with compliments, just because. Not so much lately but in the past I’ve been quite a headcase and yet he still cares enough to love me no matter what.
I am particularly grateful for my family at the moment. My father died when I was eight. Obviously it wasn’t something I’d ever thought would happen. I loved my daddy. I was daddy’s girl. From what I’ve been told I was always following him around ‘helping.’ I still think about him everyday. Sometimes I still cry. But I am grateful for the eight years I got with him. I’m grateful that I can remember him.
I’m grateful for my mother. She was unexpectedly landed alone with four young children and she did an amazing job considering. When I was younger I used to help, but as I got older I began to rebel, as most teenagers do. I made life very difficult for mum. We clashed a lot. I ran away a few times and was even brought home by the police once. They told me that if they found me again I’d be put in a foster home. I didn’t care. I felt like that would be better.
It took a while for me to grow up, but I appreciate that mum stuck around for it. She always helped me when I needed it and still does now. She checks up on me regularly and tells me she is proud often. I don’t see her as much as she would like. There’s no reason for it, I’m just not very good at visiting people. I don’t know what I would do without her though.
I’m grateful for my little sister. I was a major source of embarrassment for her when we were younger. I didn’t have a lot of friends so I used to bug her and her friends all the time. She used to get teased at high school for being ‘Vampires sister’ because of my teeth and braces (I got called Vampire). She got hassled because I was the weird kid. As sisters are, I was mean to her. I put her through a lot and pushed her away many times.
But she still likes me. She’s one of my biggest supporters. The other day when I had my panic attack she got in touch within minutes to see if I was ok. A couple of years ago for my 30th, she organized a trip to Melbourne for me, because I’d never been overseas. She showed me heaps of sights and took me to some amazing places. I wouldn’t blame her if she hated me, but instead she helps me when she can, even though she has her own life to deal with and even though she lives in another city.
I’m grateful for my brothers. I have two younger brothers. I don’t have a lot in common with them, but they like to see me succeed and encourage me along the way. When I started showing an interest in running the got together with mum to buy me some Nike’s, because they knew I wouldn’t spend that kind of money, even though I probably needed to. Twice they have gone to collect my car and return it to me when I’ve had to leave work early.
One of them loaned me some spending money for my Melbourne trip, even though he was saving for his own trip. He said it was because he wanted to make sure I had a really good time. And even though I took ages to pay him back, he never complained.
The other came and rescued me at three am one Saturday morning when I’d had a fight with my ex. I was too drunk for my own good that night. He had been out himself, although not drinking, but he came right away and took me for a drive to calm me down. He’s coming with me on the City2Surf this Sunday.
Each of these people should have written me off so many times. I failed them so often, treated them badly and said nasty nasty things. I know I hurt them and I feel terrible for it. But they still love me and for that I am so grateful.
Since I’ve stopped being ungrateful, my life has improved. I can’t exactly explain how, because nothing in particular has changed, other than my attitude. I’m able to see silver linings in almost everything which makes me a lot happier and generally nicer to be around.
I like to start the day by writing
down 10 things I am grateful for. The list changes daily, as there are so many things, but family and Zombie are almost always on it.
What are you grateful for?
Smiles and Sunshine