Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful for the family we love, the friends we cherish, what we have and for the blessings that will come. As I reflected this week I found myself overwhelmed with so many reasons to be grateful. In celebration, I wanted to share what’s most important to me.
My familyThis year has been one of celebration and change in our lives. From our youngest graduating high school and getting into his first school choice. Our daughter completing her first degree and beginning to work on her second. And as if that isn’t enough this week I am celebrating 21 years of marriage with my husband. Each of us has our own dreams but what we have together is love. What I have found for myself as well what my clients have shared with me is how easy it is to allow the monotony of our day to day to take away from the incredible beauty of the lives we have created. We get caught up in the work of being a family, the dishes, laundry, and schedules of our lives. But what I know for sure is that when we engage with each other through the love in our hearts there is nothing we can’t do together.
Incredible memoriesIt seems crazy to me that it has been 3 years since this trip. Some days it feels like yesterday and yet on others so much has changed that it feels like a different lifetime. 5 days of sweating through the heat of New Orleans. Facing the fears and internal dialogue of not knowing what to do and the curiosity of being a learner that got me through. Many achy muscles and bruises that lasted for days. Facing the deep sadness over the devastation so clearly visible after so many years. Seeing first hand the imbalance of support within poverty. And the guilt of how easily we take for granted what we have. What I know now that I didn’t know then was that I wasn’t just fighting through all that to build a home for a family. It wasn’t just meeting an incredible group of people who each inspired a new possibility in themselves. Nor was it just finding things about myself that were hidden from my view. It was another step taken towards the life I have created out of my illness. It was seeing what mattered and how that eventually made my decisions for a changed life possible. We had labeled ourselves the #globaldreambuilders and for me, that took on new meaning. For me, that became an invitation for unlimited dreaming and the possibility of making those dreams a reality.
Dreams come trueWhen I think back about how I wound up in the life I have today, there are a lot of moments that became the path that brought me here today. Some of those moments were hard to face. They seemed to bring only pain and struggle. Some moments were full of joy and are easily brought back to my mind. Others seemed to just be fun and not connected to anything important. But these are the moments of fun and joy easily missed. Over the last few years, I have done a lot of reflecting on how each and every one of these moments is a thread woven into my life. Today as I am living my dream of supporting and helping others I am so thankful for ALL the moments that shaped me. Every single moment has been a gift that prepared me to live this dream life. To have the courage to make mistakes, to fail and try new things. To celebrate the love and joy in my life. And to have the awareness and kind heart that allows me to authentically connect with my family, friends, community, clients, and students.
I wish you a Happy Thanksgiving! May you enjoy the company of your family and the nourishment of joy and laughter.