Thursday, December 20, 2012

Friday's Top Five - Things for which I am grateful

I tend to be a bit of a Debbie Downer. It's true, I know this about myself, and it's something I need to work on constantly.

So when Divulge with Dani suggested we share our thoughts about what we're grateful for this Christmas, I thought it was a brilliant idea. If nothing else, it should at least give my thousands hundreds tens five readers a break from my chronic complaining.

Friday's Top Five - Things for which I am grateful:

5) Holiday Classics

Like most everyone else, I love and look forward to the timeless Christmas shows featured on TV year after year, and it has extra meaning for me now that I can share them with my daughter. It just boggles my mind to know that she can watch the same Charlie Brown Christmas special as I did when I was a kid.

But my favourite 'classics' don't just involve television: Candy Cane Lane, which features several city blocks all lit up in festive holiday lights each year, is another staple for which I am grateful.

We're lucky enough to live near this neighbourhood, and though it's only been open for a week this season, we've already been through it four times so far. My daughter has a new-found fascination with Christmas lights, and it's just so much more enjoyable seeing these displays with her in tote. (Which is why we keep going back again and again and again....).

4)  Free Healthcare

While it's true that nothing in life is truly free, I do feel completely blessed to live in a nation where healthcare is considered our birthright.

By no means is our system flawless, but we're all guilty of taking it for granted.

I don't want to get into any political debates -- this isn't the time or place for that -- but I simply can't imagine having to pay out of pocket for something as basic as seeing a doctor when I'm sick.

As mentioned, I have a young daughter who brings home all sorts of maladies from day care, and I also have an aging mother who is requiring increased time and attention from health care professionals. And, quite frankly, I believe that if we were living anywhere else, we simply wouldn't be able to afford the care they require and deserve.

3) My Job

For all the complaining I do (and, yes, I know it's a lot), I am utterly grateful for the fact that I'm employed.

Don't get me wrong, if we won a super-sized mega jackpot lottery, I would eventually stop working (full-time anyway) and would devote my time to just living, but I know there are thousands of qualified, skilled workers who would give anything to take my place in the workforce.

And, as an added bonus, I do actually like my job.

Well, on most days anyway. But don't tell anyone that I admitted to this out loud. Ahem.

2) My Health

Oh boy, where to begin? I am probably at the unhealthiest I have ever been in my life, and yet I'm so grateful that things aren't worse.

In my teens and twenties, it was all about vanity for me. Of course I wanted to look good and maybe, just maybe, meet someone with whom I could share my life.

But these days, my focus has turned to my health, mostly because it isn't just about me anymore. I don't know if I mentioned it before (ha!), but I have a young daughter who needs her Mommy to be healthy.

What would happen to her if I wasn't here? The mere thought scares the crap out of me, which is why I need to stop taking my health for granted.

1) My Family

It's been a week now since the horrific and senseless shootings took place in a Connecticut elementary school, and it will only be a matter of time before the media attention dies down and the victims' families are left to mourn on their own...... but the agonizing pain and the void they're feeling now will always remain. And, sadly, Christmas will probably always be a reminder of this tragedy for them.

I think we've all tried to put ourselves in those people's shoes, wondering how we would react or deal with the fact that our loved ones are never coming home..... and it's just so devastating to even think about.

One of the few positives that immediately surfaces out of tragedies such as this is that the rest of us outsiders are reminded of just how lucky we are.

We still have our families.

Regardless of how horrible things can sometimes feel for me, I am truly blessed to me able to come home each night to a family that loves me unconditionally, flaws and all.

That's it for this week. Leave some comments and head on over to see what Divulge With Dani is grateful for this week.

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