This print used to hang in Grandma Cichon’s kitchen. I was mesmerized by it as a toddler, and am still enchanted to this day.
Part of what it shows is… Grateful is not always joyful.
Gratitude is a beginning, not an end. It‘s about having a profound understanding of a path that was laid out for you, about the things other people have done to lighten your load or create space for you to flourish.
Reflecting on and feeling true gratitude inspires appreciation— but not necessarily joy.
Sometimes acknowledging gratitude for things of long ago conjures up pain for the way things are now, as much as thanks for what once was.
Allowing yourself to be truly grateful for all that you’ve been given and by all who have given of themselves for you isn’t all sunshine, lollipops, and rainbows, but I think understanding and owning the complicated and uncomfortable feelings of thanks are just as important as the warm, good feeling ones we acknowledge with relish and smiles.
The first step in gratitude is allowing light into your life, even if darkness feels more comfortable.
My prayer for you today is that you can bring the light of gratitude in some dark place in your life, while still celebrating with smiles and warm hearts all the unbridled joy that makes your life worth living.
Today, I am truly grateful in every way imaginable. Happy Thanksgiving. Go Bills.