Gratitude

As the days turn into years, I sit here and think of all the things that I want.  I want it all and I want it now.  I have been so focused on everything I think I am entitled to, that I rarely stop to look at what I should be grateful for.

I should be grateful for my health.  Yes, this is cliché.  However, as I share an office with someone who is such a good soul and is battling colon cancer, I can’t help but realize just how blessed I really am.  Cancer is something I have never had the misfortune of dealing with; not personally nor in my family.  Sure, I’ve had some wicked colds in my life and it sure seemed my co-worker was battling an epic cold in the beginning of 2010.  But when she collapsed one night in January and was rushed to the hospital, she was told she had stage four colon cancer.  Since that awful night in January, her attitude has changed.  It seems she no longer sweats the little things and she puts off until tomorrow what does not need attention today.  The worst thing I have ever had to deal with is migraine headaches.  Which, anyone that has ever suffered from them knows how terrible migraines are.  But compared to cancer, these headaches are a privilege.

I should be grateful I have a decent place to live.  When I leave my small apartment in the morning and proceed to ride by all of the big, fancy homes on my way to work or even the local coffee shop, my heart kind of sinks a little.  I think back to all of the dreams and aspirations I once had that would have put me in such a beautiful abode.  On my way home from work every night, I see this unkempt fellow pacing up and down Bellevue Avenue.   His hands are always clasped behind his back as he strolls, up and down, wearing the same navy blue jumpsuit since I started travelling Bellevue Avenue in 2007.  In the hot, humid summer days he still wears the navy jumpsuit and I feel sad inside that he has nowhere to hang his tattered navy blue rags while I pull into my driveway.

I should be grateful that I have a wonderful career.  Most of my life I have lived paycheck to paycheck.  I was doing just this as a parts delivery girl for a big named auto parts supplier while making barely over minimum wage.  The way I was treated after a motorcycle accident was deplorable and that led me to seek out new employment.  I wound up interviewing for a small accounting firm, to which I was overlooked by another applicant.  A month went by and they called me back looking to reinterview.  That was in November of 2007 and I am still employed by the same small firm that takes very good care of their employees.

But what I am most grateful for is all of the little things.  The five dollars I find at the bottom of my purse.  The days that it is sunny when my driver’s side window refuses to cooperate and stay up.  I am grateful for all of the people who cross my path each day.  I thank the nice ones for making my day more pleasurable, and the not so nice ones, for showing me there is always a better attitude to be had.  Without gratitude, there is always a sense of entitlement.  I am entitled to nothing on this earth.  And who is really?

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