I think Thanksgiving is a sacred thing, and I think the act of contemplating/expressing gratitude can be quite important and therapeutic. So I'm just going to write a short little list of things I'm grateful for this year. Feel free to join me in the comments.
I'm thankful for:
1 - My family, to whom I try to stay close even when they're 2400 miles away. I'm thankful for the technology that allows me to keep in touch with them; I'm thankful for the emails and phone calls and text messages and Facebook posts that keep them part of my life when I don't get to see them.
2 - My wonderful roommates and friends, who have become like family to me. A couple days ago we hosted a "Friendsgiving" at my house; we cooked our own turkey and everything. People brought side dishes and feasted and relaxed and enjoyed each others' company. It was beautiful. I am thankful for the opportunity to meet and know these great people, and to learn from their examples as they maneuver their lives and as I try to maneuver mine.
3 - My job, which is so much more than a job. I've mentioned before that I work at a Residential Treatment Center. Those kids are my life. I don't know where I'd be without them (this is quite literally true, as my original plan was to leave Utah after college and now I really don't want to!). They teach me patience and empathy and resilience. Those students have been through so much and have been lied to by so many, yet they continually impress me with their persistent willingness to push forward and upward and to become better. I am also thankful for the co-workers I have the pleasure to work with; they have made (and continue to make) me who I am. Their example is inspiring and their friendship is unconditional.
4 - My God. I am grateful for a God who listens to me when I feel like I don't deserve to be heard. He is patient with me in ways I don't understand and He constantly gives me opportunities to grow as a person. He is ever-present in my life even when I am not making sufficient effort to be present in His. He is a Heavenly Father and He loves all of us equally. His aim is to teach us to be like Him so that we can live a life like His - a Heavenly life indeed, full of love and life and knowledge. I hope next year to be more like Him than I am today.
Your turn, readers! What are y'all thankful for this year?