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Thankful in September 2012

In August, I realized that I wasn’t in the “next stage” of my journey, and my next step was necessarily to take a step back.  (You can read about that here.)  It took me a while to get my thoughts together, but I decided to return to writing daily Thankfuls starting in September.  And that’s now, so here I go…

Saturday, 9/1:  I thought I had to be at work at 2pm today, but my planner said 1pm.  So, I called the store, and Lynn said they didn’t need me until 2pm, so that was fine.  Yay!  I hate getting thrown off my mental game plan.  I’m thankful that the schedule allowed me to go in at 2.  I’m thankful that Lynn was there; she’s so flexible.  I’m thankful that I had the time to catch up my Thankful pages today (for July and August).  And I’m thankful that I remembered to start the September page, since I’m going back to daily Thankfuls!

Sunday, 9/2:  Oh, my gosh – I have such a hard time with working an open after I closed.  I was so tired today, and not at my mental best.  I also found out that Lynn is going to transfer.  Boo!  I’m sad to see her go, but I’m so thankful for this opportunity for her.  I’m worried about the store, but I just keep focusing on the fact that I’m so grateful to have a pretty decent job and a good enough income that I can support myself.  I’m thankful for my dad and this house he rents me on the cheap.  I’d still be able to support myself without it, but not as comfortably.

Monday, 9/3:  Labor Day!  I am so, so thankful for time-and-a-half pay!

Tuesday, 9/4:  My niece, Amanda, started school today and I’m thankful that I was able to give her a call in the morning to wish her a great first day.  Of course, she hung up on me when Maw Maw pulled up in the driveway, because, you know, Maw Maw.  “I’ve got to go now, Maw Maw’s here!”  Click.

I called her back in the evening to see how the day went, and I could only understand about every third or fourth word.  I know she liked her teacher and she liked riding the bus.  I know she was nervous at first, but then she wasn’t anymore.  I know she went to the library.  And I know that I am so thankful to have her in my life.  I’m thankful that she (and all the kids) are healthy and relatively happy.  I’m thankful they have a roof over their heads and food to eat – and a school to go to.  Not all children in the world have those luxuries.

Wednesday, 9/5: Office day today, but I just could not sleep last night.  It was almost 4 in the morning before I finally slept.  I’m thankful that I don’t have to do any physical work today, because I would be dying!  Truck day changed this week, but also Bible Study night (since I had to work late on Monday).  My uncle wasn’t there at first because he was visiting a friend in the hospital.  His friend has been suffering with MS for the past 20 years, and I’m thankful that Uncle Lenny was able to be there for him, to offer some support.  I don’t appreciate my relative good health like I should; it’s pretty easy to take that kind of thing for granted – like clean water, food to eat and a roof over my head.  I am thankful that I’m mobile and I have all my fingers and toes. My eyes and ears don’t work as great as they used to, but they do the job.  I’m so thankful for what I have, even if I don’t always remember to be thankful.

Thursday, 9/6:  I worked close tonight and was finishing up truck when one of our regular customers came in with her granddaughter.  Kylie is totally high-spirited, and once you engage her there’s no turning back.  Grandma hasn’t brought her in for quite some time, and as I was saying “hi”, Kylie popped up in front of me with a look that said, “And what about me?!”  And I engaged.  After that, she simply demanded my attention.  At first I was sorry, because I had work to do, but after a bit I realized that, “this is okay.”  I chose a smaller task that allowed me to keep working and still talk to Kylie.  And it was fun.  She loves to help, but sometimes kid help is not really help.  Still, I kept going, finding small things that she could do.  It made her so happy and it did keep me from having to do some low-to-the-ground stuff, so win-win!  🙂

Did my job take a little longer than normal because I spent time engaging with Kylie?  Sure it did.  But the payoff was worth it.  I’m so thankful that I slowed down enough to pay attention to Kylie.  She won’t remember this night, and I wouldn’t either if it weren’t for this list.  But we are both enriched for that experience together.  We laughed and teased and played and it made us both happy.  We may not remember this night, but we will remember each other.  I’m thankful for 4-year-old girls, and for items that need to be put away in places they can reach.  Including places in my heart, where I didn’t realize before that anything was even missing.  

Friday, 9/7:  Today I asked Clay Morgan, who wrote Undead, if he would do an interview for my blog.  And he said yes!  I’m super excited – and mostly nervous I’ll mess it up, because the book is good and I don’t want to detract from that.  I’m also thankful for his blog, because it generally makes me think.  I already have some truly great blog friends who inspire and challenge me, who engage my mind and give me new ways to see the world (I’m looking at you Angela and Melissa!)  But they don’t post all that often.  Being exposed to thought-provoking posts on a near daily basis has helped me to recognize what I’ve been missing here.  Or perhaps it is just a glimpse of something that I once felt here and have since lost.

I also got a comment this week from someone who said I made her think.  People used to say that to me all the time!  But I began to flounder a bit at the end of last year, and this year has been perhaps too much about what I’m working on in terms of personal growth.  I’ve also been branching out with my writing, exploring my areas of interest, and those posts don’t really inspire the same kind of commenter feedback.  While I think it’s important to go through these growing pains, and I’m so thankful for the lessons I’m learning along the way, I’ve felt that something was missing and I couldn’t put my finger on what it was.  Is it the inspiration and thought-provoking that I think I was accomplishing before?  Or maybe it’s all in my head!  When I look back at this blog, I don’t see a consistent pattern that would enable me to say, “yeah, right there – that’s where I lost it.”  I just know I don’t hear those words, “you made me think,” like I used to.  

Anyway, I’m thankful to be coming to a point where I’m getting some of my vision back.  Sort of.  Maybe.  Perhaps it’s going to be true for the rest of my life, that I feel like I’m finally getting somewhere, but still feel completely confused.  How can you feel that things are starting to come together, and at the same time feel that you are utterly undone?  I have to be thankful for right now.  I have to be – I am – thankful to at least be thinking about what I want.  I’d rather be confused and searching, than be confused and shut down.

Saturday, 9/8: Soccer!  I had planned to spend time with my sister and her family today, and as a bonus, I found out that today was the first soccer game of the season.  So, I got to go see my nephews play – they’re both on the same team this year, so that’s a two-for-one deal!  I had forgotten how much I love their games until I got there and was thoroughly enjoying myself.  It’s exciting and fun!  And how thrilling it is to see people you love doing something they love, and for you to have an opportunity to be there on the sidelines cheering them on.  It’s so great and uplifting to witness their talent and skill, and to be proud of them.  I am thankful for soccer, and I am overwhelmingly thankful for those kids.

The sun was ferocious this afternoon, but Angel (Logan’s girlfriend) came prepared.  She’d brought two umbrellas, so there was an extra for me!  It’s interesting how I felt the thankfulness for that umbrella.  Of course I told her thank you, but I also thought, “I’ve got to remember this, so I can put it on my list.”  And then, nearly every time I tilted it this way or that to keep the sun out of my eyes, I thought again, “I am grateful for this umbrella.”  

I think that’s the beauty of the daily list, that I am “saving up” these little things that would have previously passed me by.  I am acknowledging them for the simple joys and pleasures that they are.  You know, it was a small thing to have that umbrella, but it didn’t feel as insignificant as it would have even 30 days ago.  It felt bigger because I recognized my thankfulness.

Then tonight, I stopped at Wegman’s to do the shopping I should have done on Friday.  (I’m thankful that Wegman’s is open until midnight, and that it’s practically deserted in those late hours!)  As I was looking at the chicken, I realized that some were priced cheaper than others.  I’m all for cheaper, but I read the label carefully to make sure I was getting what I really thought I was getting.  What I realized is the packages were miss-labeled.  There’s usually not much staff there at 11pm, but there happened to be a guy working nearby, so I told him.  Naturally, I want to get a good deal where I can, but as soon as I realized they were miss-priced, that “deal” became stealing to me.  It feels good to know that my moral compass is pointing in the right direction, that I wouldn’t even consider taking those packages up to the register.  I think that my integrity is worth the extra $4.  I’m thankful that I can feel good about myself, and that I can be comfortable with the decisions I make.

Sunday, 9/9: Off today, but I’m very tired.  I got my Thankfuls all typed in, and I did some cooking.  I’m thankful to be off today so I can rest, though.

Monday, 9/10:  I worked an early today, but I have not been sleeping.  I’ve just had a terrible time getting to sleep and then staying asleep the last two weeks.  I was tired on Sunday, and then today it really came to a head.  There were a couple times when I thought I was  just going to fall out, standing there at work.  My aunt was feeling sick, so we didn’t have bible study, and I felt bad about that – certainly I don’t want her to be feeling sick.  But I was so glad to be able to just head on home after work, and rest.  And I had been kind of worried about driving home at 8:30 or 9pm after bible study, on the backroads that aren’t my backroads, that I’m less familiar with, feeling that tired and not alert to drive.  I was thankful to be able to get home and get to bed early.  I’m thankful I made it through the day without falling out!

Tuesday, 9/11:  I had the day off, and I had a pretty good day.  I got some cooking done and got some work done for upcoming blog posts.  The main thing is that I got to go and have dinner with my friends Terri and John, a really great couple.  I haven’t seen them since they treated me to a Third Day concert a few months ago.  I chit-chat with them on twitter sometimes, though.  It was just a really lovely, wonderful time.  We were the people who ate and then sat there for two hours afterward.  Luckily, it wasn’t a busy place, so there were lots of empty tables – we weren’t denying anyone any tips by holding up the table!

They were also gracious and kind enough to answer some Queries for me, and I just love their answers.  They give me things to think about, that enrich the conversation. It was just a great time.  I’m so thankful to have friends.  I don’t get to see my friends all that often, but I’m thankful that when we do see each other, we can pick up where we left off.  I’ve just been blessed with friendship.  I wish for my own sake that I would put more effort into – I should  put more effort into getting together with my friends and spending time with them.  And that’s something that I do need to continue to work on .  In the meantime, I’m thankful that however much time passes, they don’t forget about me and they still love me.

Wednesday, 9/12: Today I’m super thankful that I just got two nights of actual, real sleep.  Last night I slept straight through, it was great, and I feel like I’m finally catching up on some sleep.  I feel happy today, I feel more energetic, just feel so much better now that I’ve slept.  So thankful for that!

Thursday, 9/13: Today was one of those days at work.  My 3 holes to fill turned into 6 last Friday afternoon, and then to 8 when I got in this morning.  Doable, but totally stressful.  And it’s my birthday, ya’ll!  But, you just do what you can do and when you leave the building, you try to leave the stress in there, too.  I got half of the holes filled today, and there was nothing more I could do when I left.  And I left a little early, so I could catch an interview I wanted to hear.  I’m thankful that the holes are getting plugged, and especially that I was able to fill a shift for someone at the last minute, someone who is so kind to me and accommodating whenever she can be.  She’s filled many a pharmacist hole since she came to the district, and I’m overjoyed that I was able to get her a day off when she asked for it.  I’m also so thankful for the pharmacists who take these extra shifts, because they don’t have to.

Friday, 9/14: Shifts are all covered!  Extremely last minute, extremely thankful to be done.  Tired, tired, tired.  I’m thankful to be home, and I’ll be thankful to have clean laundry tomorrow if I can get my butt outta this chair and put in a load.  🙂

You know what?  Shout out to @AmyCSeverson, who chats with me on Twitter sometimes!  She blogs at Fix it or Deal where, among other things, she tells wonderful short stories based on a fold-your-own robot calendar (last year was zombies).  I’ve linked you to my favorite, favorite one – which is saying something, because they’re all good.  

Sometimes you just need to feel connected.  Sometimes you just need a laugh to lighten your mood, or to give you the little boost that enables you to soldier on in the trenches.  Like a Twitter sugar fix.  Sometimes you just need a friendly person to chat with, someone who will respond to those 140 characters you toss out into the digital ether.    Amy answers back.  And that’s pretty awesome.  That’s something I’m thankful for.  I am thankful for Amy.  

Saturday, 9/15:

Sunday, 9/16:

Monday, 9/17:

Tuesday, 9/18:

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