This blog is usually about the negative aspects of my life as they relate to my mother’s death. However, it is important for me to point out that I have so much to be thankful for. This year took away one of the most important people in my life; But it also gave me many gifts.

In honor of Thanksgiving, I’d like to list everything that I am thankful for:

I am thankful for my family. I probably wouldn’t have gotten through this year without them. As cliche as it sounds, they are my family and I love each and every one of them, even if they annoy me sometimes.

I am thankful for my health and the health of my family members. This was never under-appreciated, but it’s never been more appreciated than now.

I am thankful for my amazing nephew and niece. I don’t even have words to describe how much I love those two kids.

I am thankful that my sister and brother-in-law made them. 🙂

I am thankful that my mom had the opportunity to be a grandmother. While she was taken way too soon, and my children and nieces and nephews will never know her (my nephew remembers her, but he was 3.5 when she died), I am thankful she got to express the joy of having grandchildren.

I am thankful for the 31 years that I had my mother. When I’m feeling really down, I remind myself that many people didn’t have that long with their own mothers. Or those who have mothers, but not the privilege of having a wonderful mother like mine.

I am thankful for The Boy. He has enriched my life in ways I never thought possible.

I am thankful for The Boy’s family. They took me in as their own from the day I met them, and I can honestly say I love them all.

I am thankful for my incredible friends. Amazing isn’t a strong enough work to describe this point, but unfortunately there aren’t enough adjectives to describe how lucky I am in this department. It always amazes me how they were always there when I needed them, even at the expense of their own personal lives.

I am thankful for my dance studio. Other than losing about 20 lbs and making more of the aforementioned incredible friends, the studio was my refuge. It is what kept my head above water and kept me from sinking. It retained my sanity and gave me a sanctuary where I could be temporarily released from my thoughts and the darkness I was in for so long. It gave me a way to be with and around people without actually having to be with and around people. For that I will be eternally grateful.

I am thankful that I get to wake up every morning and go to a job that I love.

I am thankful that nothing happened at the break in when we just moved into our new apartment; That nothing was stolen and no one got hurt.

I am thankful that my father found a new companion.

I am thankful that she is a wonderful woman who we all really like. I know that I will grow to love her one day. I am already crazy about her sons.

I am thankful that through all our pain, we are able to see the many gifts that we have, and that, in my opinion, is the greatest gift of all.