Giving Thanks
Photo byย Priscilla Du Preezย onย Unsplash


Today I let go of control – of trying to make Thanksgiving and all these holidays turn out a certain way.

Giving thanks during darker times can be challenging. When the world around us is unsettling and sometimes harsh, I can find myself hanging on rather than celebrating and giving thanks for the bounty and greatness that exists in my life.

But greatness and bounty are there. All I need to do is see them.

Abundance of small comforts fills every corner of my life. From an early morning cup of perfectly created coffee to the end-of-day bed that cradles my body and soul, my life is filled with so much to be grateful for.

And it’s too easy to overlook the goodness in favor of griping and scowling. Recently it feels like I’ve received an advanced degree in bitching. I’ve perfected the whine or the snide biting remarks that can overshadow the brilliance of a sunny day spent with people I love.

While I strive to give thanks well beyond a holiday season, I will embrace this time of year to shine my light on the good.

I will acknowledge the person who lets me scoot ahead of them in line so I can be done quicker. I will take a lingering moment to thank Rod profusely for bringing me coffee, putting gas in my car, picking up my mail/packages/library books, and letting me unload emotionally when things beyond my control get to be too much.

I will smile sincerely when my eyes meet those of a stranger or a child or a friend I’ve missed seeing. I will allow all my senses to turn from worrying about another fire to absorbing the sights and smells of these fall days in Northern California, including a sunny warmth that fills me with hope.ย ย I will let go of angst and dissatisfaction.

This is the time of year when I hear a lot of cliches about the bounty of life … in spite of hardships, fear, and loneliness for some. I don’t want to further the emptiness of such sayings. I do want to encourage you to do what you need to do in order to find peace and joy that is rightfully yours. My way to find that holiday contentedness is to let go — let go of expectations generated by well-meaning friends, family, and ambitious retailers.

I can enjoy the holidays just the way I am, with all that I have today. There is nothing more I need. This is my wish for you as well.