I rarely engage in Facebook chain mail. You know exactly what I’m talking about: Like this or Share that; Post what color your whatever are; Tell your friends about your whosiwhatsit and tag the eighty people in your wedding party to do the same… No thanks. But recently I saw friends posting about the Gratitude Challenge.
A Gratitude Challenge? Gratitude lists? I love making gratitude lists. I love reading gratitude lists. I even do them on this blog… Holy s#%@! This is Faceplace chain-crap I could get into, even read without cynicism, sarcasm possibly even passive eye-rolling? I’m really not this sour, but I do feel like the weight of empowerment messages gets diluted when you see one every five seconds and it’s totally tainted when used or misdirected for unsavory purposes. That happens A LOT on social media.
I think my reputation precedes me because for weeks, no one nominated me. Until this weekend when probably one of my more (maybe most) cynical friends nominated me. In fact, if you had asked me to predict who out of all the people I know would have a snowballs’ chance in hell of PARTICIPATING in this challenge, forget taking the extra step and actually following the directions in some way and NOMINATING others for it, no way would it have been this person. So a couple things struck me about that (only one I will share): there is such power in making a Gratitude List, it strikes a cord with all of us. It wakes us all up.
So it is a week since I began those five days and I wrote my five consecutive lists, so I thought I would share them here too: My Five Days of Gratitude…
Saturday, September 13, 2014
I was nominated to participate in the #gratitudechallenge to make a daily list of the things I am grateful for… This is #Day1.
If you feel like sharing what you are grateful for…consider yourself nominated too.
– I am grateful for my loving family, my husband and my brilliant and amazing children–if all I am ever known for in this life is bring the two of them into this world, that will be more than accomplishment enough. am grateful for the well-being of my family. Yesterday my husband and I got a taste of what it felt like to not know where your kid was–it was terrifying–(all is well now, long story) but it made me all the more grateful.
– I am grateful for live theater. It is probably the single most exhilarating, inspiring and constant creative force that has been in my life since…forever and I do not know who or where I would be without it.
– I am grateful that I have shelter on this rainy night. My daughter and I walked through Times Square this evening after seeing a show, and passed people far less fortunate than us–we were fed, we had enjoyed an amazing night together and were going home to a warm bed.
– Finally, I am grateful for technology… It has played a huge role in my life both personally and professionally, and given me opportunities that have been beyond my wildest dreams.
Sunday, September 14, 2014
– In my early 20s, when I was in a very different and dark place in my life I remember seeing women…moms…at playgrounds, on sports fields, pushing strollers, thinking that kind of life was not within my reach. I always wanted it, but it seemed so far away. Impossible. Unthinkable. Unimaginable. This morning was the first practice of the fall baseball season for my son (he’s been playing since he was three). It was early for a Sunday, and I was awake, on time and enjoyed watching him doing something he loves. If someone had told me sixteen years ago this would be my life, I never would have believed them.
– I am grateful for this beautiful preview of early fall. It’s so crisp, but not yet too cold.
– I am grateful for my friends–some I have known for decades, some I’ve met more recently, all have contributed meaningfully to the fabric of my life and I cannot imagine a world without you (and if you are wondering if I am speaking of you, I am).
– I am grateful for coffee–particularly that morning cup, it’s just the best. I’ve tried to give it up, but it brings me such pleasure, and over time I’ve learned how to refine my relationship with Java and know when and how I can indulge without it effecting me adversely.
Monday, September 15, 2014
#GratitudeChallenge #Day3 Quick gratitude post today
– Chocolate covered almonds
– A nice walk: clears the head, gets the heart rate up, makes everything fine…
– Having the opportunity to experience love in many varieties–even heartbreak.
– A chic pair of sunglasses in fall. They just pull everything together.
Tuesday, September 16, 2014
– I love being able to call myself a Native New Yorker. I mean I LOVE it–and not in a snooty way. I love how people still say “I didn’t know there are actually people FROM here…”
– Countess mistakes, obstacles and hurdles I’ve encountered and overcome… Even those that have gotten the best of me but taught me something, perhaps what I don’t need or want anymore.
– Peanut butter may be the most perfect food. What else tastes delicious on cold noodles and with jelly on bread?
– The beach. It’s my happy place. At the Caribbean it’s nirvana.
Wednesday, September 17, 2014
#GratitudeChallenge #Day5 #finalgratitudepost
– I’m grateful I was asked to think about gratitude in a methodical, specific and disciplined way. I took notice of things I might not have otherwise and I hope I do that more now.
– I’m grateful for what I’ve yet to learn, there is so much and I am thankful for all my teachers–past, present and future. They are formal, informal, intentional and unintentional–regardless the impact is the same. Count yourself among them.
– I am grateful for books. Literature, I love getting lost in words, nothing is quite like the perfect string of words all spun together.
– I’m grateful to be going to see the Eagles tomorrow at MSG.