One of the lessons that I learned from my years in Al Anon, recovering from my years of toxic relationships with addicts, I learned to celebrate the things for which I feel grateful. During my first meeting in Hing Kong, when I was filled with pain, emotional pain, mental distress, feeling alone in the world without a life raft, the collective of survivors suggested I make a gratitude list.
In the early days it was rudimentary. Through my tears I tried to express gratitude for life, health, my cats, family, food, a flight back to the States. It took baby steps. It took years of self reflection. I wrote in a journal. I went to meetings. I listened to other leap,e tell their stories. Then I told mine.
I practiced the 12 Steps. I learned from others. I found peace & serenity. I found happiness. I learned lessons.
Everyday I try to find something for which I feel gratitude. Today, I celebrate my relationship with my husband, my father, my brother, my husband’s family, a few close friends. I feel grateful for my coworkers who are likeminded and give me emotional support. I am grateful for my furry companions, a regular paycheck, wine, transportation, my great health, surviving Covid, books, flannel sheets, the ability to telecommute, reconnecting with people from my past, forgiveness for past perceived wrongs, joy,
I celebrate the good fortune to be a citizen of the USA, to enjoy the freedoms of our republic, to live in a world where I have choices, to embrace the diversity of our country, to know that anyone can reinvent themselves and explore new options.
I urge all to let go of the past, celebrate the present, live in the moment, and open one’s mind to possibility. That is the beauty of America. We are not constrained by who we are at birth. We can spread our wings and fly with ingenuity, passion, intellect, creativity, and pursuit of the American dream.
Do not listen to naysayers. Be all that you can be. Gratitude begets gratitude and success.
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