So Many Reasons to Give Thanks

As a young man, I used to think I was Superman. I was indestructible. Cold, hard and able to handle anything on my own. However, as I grow, I continue to realize what could eventually make me Superman is the fact I want to continue to learn…and become soft.

Wednesday I posted on my Facebook page, asking everyone what they were thankful for this year and I loved each and every response. It is that time of year where even the hardest of hearts softens and it was fantastic to see the beautiful answers to the questions, as most of them considered their family and friends what they are most thankful for in 2013.

I have so much to be thankful for myself this year. While the year that went by since last Thanksgiving may not have had every tiny detail of the plan in my neurotic brain go as planned, it was a magnificent year. My journey took me in directions I hadn’t planned for and, looking back, they turned out better than what I could have hoped.

While a blog is certainly a place to get real and allow the reader to know the author, today is a day of family and thankfulness. I am overwhelmed with thanks to many people and many situations. In fact, there are too many to truly list adequately, so rather I have come up with a list of things I am thankful for and they are in no particular order.

I am thankful for…

Ethan and Alex. My babies will always be my babies, no matter how old they are or how big they become. I continue to be amazed watching them grow up and I can already see they will be amazing, productive and happy adults in only a blink of an eye.

Work. After years of working temp jobs, 2013 finally brought me a permanent “home” in the working world. Being there for a couple months, the training went well and I love the position.

My Mom. My Mom has been an incredible gift to the kids and myself throughout the years, especially the past five years or so. Because of that fact, she needs to be singled out from the rest of my family pack. She has done so much for us and, to be quite honest, it is too much to ever truly thank her properly. The only way I can think to do so in a real way is to continue on my journey and become the man she hoped her son would grow up to be one day.

Coffee. Without the black stuff, I would never have re-adjusted to the working world as smoothly as I did.

My family. Cassie, Mark, Emma, Tina, Jon, Amelia, Zoe, my Dad Rick, Sarah, Emily and Jake. As I continue to grow, I have made a bit more of an effort to reach out than I had in the past. As I mentioned above, my own hard heart has begun to soften and I truly realize how important my family is to me. I don’t say it enough, but I love each and every one of you.

Friends. Mykl, Jen, Tim, Erica, Kate, Jamie, Julie, Mike, Jeff and Robin. Each of you has helped me through some sad times and been there to celebrate the good as well. I’m thankful to all of you for knowing my flaws and continuing to open your arms of friendship to me. For those of you who have been friends for years, it’s about time you made it out to karaoke with the rest of us if you haven’t already.

Music. I have always been a music lover, but the past year the music library in my life has expanded exponentially. I’ve discovered new artists on my own, while some were recommended and all of them are welcomed into my life’s soundtrack. With both karaoke and concerts I attended this year, I’m thankful for music in order to express emotions I haven’t yet been able to articulate at times.

Netflix. You may laugh at being thankful for something like this, but watching the movies and documentaries I’ve dug up on there has been an incredible help to me. When I watch an amazing movie with a plot that keeps my interest and characters I empathize with, it triggers emotions and, more importantly to me, creativity in finding new ways to express those emotions in constructive ways. You are, after all, reading a blog which is proof of exactly that right now.

Ang. Quite simply, I’m thankful to have you in my life and, despite my mistakes and flaws, your love has brought us full circle. I haven’t smiled and laughed with anyone in my life as much as I have with you and I’m thankful for you being my constant companion. I love you, Hudson, Annie and Izzie and, while we joke that we’re probably driving people crazy on social media with our lovey-dovey stuff, I’m man enough not to care. I’m thankful I will always feel that way.

Those are just a few of the things I’m thankful for, but, as you can see, they are some of the most important ones. There is one more thing, however, I feel the need to share here for which I’m thankful.

My journey in life. There have been a lot of twists and turns—some planned and some unexpected—but all of them have helped to make me the person I am today. Even the so-called “bad” things were meant to happen, but the change in recent times is my willingness to learn lessons from them, rather than complain about my misfortune. I’ve learned more about life—and myself—in the past year than in all the years prior combined.

I’m thankful for this journey called life.

…and I’m thankful for all of you who read this blog or engage with me on social media. Each of you brings a smile to my face daily and I’m thankful if I’m able to do so every once in a while in return.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

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