Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Thankful For Many Blessings in Life

original run date November 15, 2011
Chariton Valley News Press

Every time I sit down to write a column, I panic. I never know if what has been rolling around in my head will come out on paper like I want it to. Needless to say, there are a lot of ideas rolling around in my head these days – I wish they were all useable.
I’ve been working on ad layouts all morning while the men in my life are out trying to tag a deer and the thought crossed my mind. “You big dummy – Thanksgiving is in a week. You have so much to be thankful for.”
So here goes my list for this year.
First and foremost, I’m thankful for my faith. It doesn’t matter if I’m in a church, my car, or on horseback; alone or with family and friends– I know somebody has my back that no other person, place or thing can beat.
Everyone is thankful for their family and I am no exception. Without my husband and kids what else would I write about? They are the center of my earthly world and always will be. They make me mad, laugh hysterically, and many times wonder how I got myself into this thing called marriage and parenthood. I can’t imagine not having them add to everyday in my life. I’m thankful for the time I had with Jeana and the influence she has had on us as a family. There isn’t a day I’m not grateful for everyday I was given with her and each and every day I have with Larry, Joni and Jake.
I can’t thank my parents enough for making me the independent woman I am today. They gave me a work ethic that sometimes I think is going to kill me. I have a backbone to stand up for my kids and myself even when others tell me to back down because my parents always did the same for me. It doesn’t matter what I ask of them when I need a helping hand, they are there – even when I know they are thinking I’m a crazy lunatic they should have given up on years ago.
I can’t make a list without including my extended family of brothers, sister, their spouses, my in-laws and all my nieces and nephews. Life would be downright boring without that bunch of crazies in my life. My siblings have always been the first to show up when the times got tough. My nieces and nephews are probably the most amazing individuals any person will ever meet. I’ve spoiled them to the best of my ability and enjoyed watching the older ones grown into a pretty unique group of adults. The youngest of the first generation and all the “greats” are looking to be just as amazing. Trust me, they will be just as loved and spoiled as the older ones.
 My family doesn’t need much of a reason to get together for a meal and game of pitch or spoons. We have been known to turn the blandest event into quite a ruckus. The holidays are always memorable beyond the meal and presents when this bunch gets together and I’m sure this year will be no exception.
We do have to be reminded once in a while that we now have little kids playing spoons again so care must be taken not to injure them or their parents.
My list of friends is pretty impressive if I say so myself. They are all important to me but I have to say thank you to my two closest friends – Cindy and Molly. You two have gotten me through some pretty stressful events in life. Even though you don’t always agree with me – you’ve been there.
I do believe Cindy is out to injure me as we do the Biggest Loser contest together over the holidays but it is great having someone kicking me in the behind when needed. That doesn’t mean I won’t be sending her the doctor bill if she kicks to hard. I’m truly thankful to have her as a friend that makes me laugh until my sides hurt and kicks my posterior if I need it. I know she will be there day in and day out.
Molly has been the friend that has been there since high school. She got me through the worst event in my life with grace, love and understanding. She is one woman I’m thankful to have in my life everyday. Whether we get together to do something as friends or I’m helping her out at a school dance or other event, we always manage to find something to laugh at each other about. Life would be boring without a friendship like Molly’s.
Friendships like these make the world go around. You can always depend on true friends to tell you the truth, defend your decisions even if they don’t always agree, and be the parent to my kids when I’m not around. Both of these women have been a second mom to my kids’ and I love and respect them for playing the role in the manner they have.
I’m truly grateful to Laura for giving me a chance when she hired me for this job. What turned out as a temporary spot is working into one of the greatest challenges I have ever been faced with as well as one of the most fulfilling. My days are always filled with creative challenges and opportunities I dreamed about in high school and never thought would ever be fulfilled. I’m truly enjoying everyday at work and the challenges it presents. I never knew a job could actually stress me every day and I would enjoy it this much.
My co-workers are another blessing in my life these days. Jess is becoming a part of my family as each week the two of us put in the extra hours to put the paper together. We are anxiously awaiting the return of Natalie from maternity leave – we know she is enjoying the time spent bonding with her family but man, we miss her. Bouncing ideas off of each other is always an adventure and those bonding moments bring the “work family” a little closer together.
Please don’t call and have the authorities commit me for this one but I’m thankful for all my past experiences whether good or bad. I don’t always like what has happened in the past – some I just downright loathe – but I know God did everything for a reason and I know I shouldn’t question Him. I’ve been pretty downright mad at him for a few of them but when it comes right down to it - I’m almost scared to know where life would have taken me if I was in control instead of Him. He has challenged me in ways that have made me want to give up but every one of those challenges has directed my life to where it is today and for that I’m grateful and humbled.
I really wish the business world would put more emphasis on Thanksgiving beyond the meal and football. Sitting down and writing out everything I’m thankful is a humbling. Even with the events in my history that have changed my life and inner self, I’m a pretty blessed individual.
I hope all of our readers and patrons have a blessed Thanksgiving holiday with family and friends. Enjoy the day of family, food, football, and friendship but more importantly, count your blessings both big and small. If only everyday could be a holiday like Thanksgiving.

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