Reflection: Giving Thanks Every Day of the Year

With all of the hostility and tension within the world currently, some may find it hard to be in the holiday spirit. The negatives just seem to completely outweigh the positives, lately. With Thanksgiving right around the corner, it is the perfect time to reflect on all of the good within each of our lives, hopefully bringing a little change of perspective, reminding us all to embrace the little things, to be thankful. 


    Ever since I can remember, Thanksgiving consisted of hand traced turkeys, grandma’s house, and lists of “I am thankful for..”s. While I am certainly glad that I have these memories, I did not truly realize what it meant to be grateful and thankful until a few years ago.


    After a devastating house fire in 2012, which destroyed everything my family owned, I completely encompassed the word “grateful”: grateful for my life, for my family’s lives, for the community I lived in, for the chance to start again. Now, not everyone needs to go through such a life shattering event to become truly grateful, but it did open my eyes to a world of positivity and thankfulness.


    While reflecting on my past experiences, I truly have learned what I am grateful for every day of the year, but especially on Thanksgiving.


   I am grateful for the pure souls in my life who continue to radiate nothing but love. My current support system partakes in all of my crazy antics, including ice cream dates, late night adventures, and laughter at all times. Toxicity in these relationships simply doesn't exist, and these people constantly remind me that home, to me, is not a place. It is a collection of my absolute favorite people. 


   I am grateful for books. Losing myself in another world has always been one of my favorite pastimes. The smell of the pages always have and always will give me comfort like no other.


   I am grateful for jaw dropping lyrics and flawless melodies that make my heart sing. Nothing is ever as magical as finding those lyrics that resonate with your soul. Music has brought me lots of sunshine, simply being the soundtrack to every favorite memory that I have.


   I am grateful for growth. Endings and new beginnings have always been so difficult for me. Letting go has never been easy, but I am grateful for these growing pains. Like my soul sister Meredith Grey once said, “[a]t some point, you just have to let go, move on. Because no matter how painful it is, it's the only way we grow.” I am grateful to be learning, growing, changing, even if it may be painful.


   I am grateful for baking. My heart truly lies in the kitchen, baking up anything from cookies to cream puffs to pies. It brings me such unmeasurable joy to create such beautiful desserts, and while social work may be my major, baking will always be a great passion of mine, as an outlet of sorts.


   I am grateful that I can be overwhelmingly grateful, every day of the year. I am grateful for all of the magical occurrences that occur in my life. I would not change my path, my story, or my life for anything or anyone. I am just so undeniably grateful for my journey, simply stated.

Tristen B.