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photo by Sheri Dixon

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanks By Number

1. My Family- first, foremost and always- the people who I get out of bed for, go to work for, cook for, do for, worry about, stress over, fuss at. The people I couldn't do without, and who give me strength, direction, and a daily dose of awe at just how incredible they are.

2. My Friends- the people who don't even have to like me, put up with me, or be around me, but who choose to do so, sometimes for entire decades. The people who hold my family as dear to themselves as I do, and who are there to catch us if life smacks us down.

3. Our current home- this graceful old Victorian we (mostly) renovated has been shelter in good times and bad, gave me my first lessons in gardening and livestock keeping in Texas, has been the backdrop for every "sickness and health, better or worse" Ward and I have been through, and is where Alec came into the world (actually about 3 ft from where I'm typing). It became magically and affordably available exactly when I needed it, gave me wonderful neighbors and although leaving is so very hard, I'm confident that its new family will love it as much as we do- I wouldn't be selling it to them if I didn't think so.

4. Our future home- only 3 miles from our current home, it still took us years to find it, months to acquire it, and more years to finally build on it. Every inch of it has always taken my breath away, and I don't expect that to ever change. That the house is our own design makes it all the more special and precious.

5. Work- yes, work. I'm fortunate enough to have a job that's (mostly) rewarding and fulfilling and to be in the employ of people who have always taken my opinions seriously and make me feel that I work WITH them, and not FOR them. I strive every day to foster the same atmosphere with those who answer to ME. To have been given the freedom to tele-commute when we need to be out of town for health reasons has been a gift I'll always be appreciative of.

6. The animals in my care- pets or livestock, matters not. They've all taught me and continue to teach me daily lessons in patience, loyalty, pragmatism, hope, community, adaptability, grace. I can gauge my success (or not) in being fully and compassionately human by recognizing that it's reflected back at me in their eyes- and acting accordingly when I so often fall short.

7. The wonders of technology- the computer that's given us so many opportunities to expand the scope of the word "family", medical science that's kept us all alive at one time or another, my bread machine. If TS ever really hits TF, we'll need to learn to like tortillas, because I couldn't raise a loaf of bread with a pulley.

8. The bad bits in my life- times I've been treated unfairly, even cruelly both emotionally and physically. The times I've been truly poor and afraid, truly lost and lacking options. Those are the times that sparked an anger in me- a bullheadedness to keep putting one foot in front of the other no matter what- sometimes in hope of a better day coming up, more often just to show the bastards I wouldn't stay down. Without the bad bits, I wouldn't have been right where I needed to be to find the best of all the others, and I wouldn't be the person I am now who fully appreciates it all.

***Happy Thanksgiving***

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