With Thanksgiving coming up, I’d like to take the time to reflect on what I am thankful for. A few months ago, I was going through a tough time. I started a gratitude journal, which has helped me feel a little more positive. Every day I write something I am thankful for. Some days it is harder than others to think of something, but even during the worst times, there is something, even if it is small, to be thankful for. Thanksgiving is a hard time of year for me. It usually comes with a lot of food anxiety, body image issues, grief, and is about a week away from a trauma anniversary which brings up a lot of memories and emotions. The holidays can be really hard sometimes, but I still like to think about what I am thankful for. This year I am thankful for:
I try to watch the sunset each day. There is something amazing about the way that each sunset is different but still gorgeous. I love that I can look at the sunset and know that a bunch of other people can look at the same sunset I am looking at; it makes me feel connected to them. Sunsets remind me how colorful and beautiful life can be and that no matter what happened today tomorrow is a new day.
Waterfalls are so beautiful, and nothing makes me happier than being able to splash around the bottom of the falls. Waterfalls make me feel calm, at peace, and happy.
I often escape to nature when I am having a tough time. The fresh air, the sun, and the beauty of nature make me happier. I reconnect with myself in nature. I find nature very healing.
4. Fuzzy socks
I love winter nights where I come home and put on cute fuzzy socks (they usually have really cute designs on them), drink hot chocolate and watch a movie. It Is one of those simple things that makes me feel so happy.
For a long time, tea was the thing that got me out of bed most days. I looked forward to drinking my hot tea in my favorite mug.
I love getting lost in a good book. I love holding the book in my hand, the smell of books and turning the pages and I love being able to spend time in a different world for a little bit.
The kind of music that makes every part of you buzz along with it. The kind of music you can’t help but dance along or sing along to no matter who is around. Some of my best memories are concerts or jam sessions with some of my friends. The kind of music that makes you feel deeply as well. Music can be incredibly therapeutic.
8. Friends and family
The kind of people who support you when you are going through a tough time and celebrate along with you when you succeed and are happy.
9. Fuzzy blankets
I love cuddling up under a fuzzy blanket. Whenever I get a new blanket, I feel excited.
I love anything that can make me laugh. I feel so much better after I have laughed. Laughing heals.
The leaves changing colors is one of my favorite sites and makes every drive or walk exciting. I love sweater weather and spiced drinks and food. I love Halloween where I get to watch Halloween movies and see adorable kids in their costumes happy and excited.
12. The beach
I love digging in the sand, splashing in the ocean and looking for seashells and rock. The beach is beautiful, calm and healing for me.
13. Puppies and kittens
How can you not smile when around a puppy or a kitten?
14. Coffee shops and bookstores
A few days ago I found this really cute coffee shop. It was small and cozy, and had bookshelves along the wall. I spent three hours reading, drinking tea by the fireplace and enjoying the vibe of the place.
15. Good conversations
The kind of conversations where you start talking and when you look at the clock, you realize it has been 4 hours. The conversations that leave your heart and soul feel full.
I love being able to experience another culture and explore new places. I love learning new languages, trying new foods, learning the history of the place and listening to the music.
Being thankful does not take away the pain around the holidays and is not a cure for mental illness. Being thankful does not mean that I am automatically happy. However, being thankful and having things to hold onto makes it a little easier for me to make it through. It gives me hope that I can and will get through the hard times, because I have before. Happy Holidays! If the Holidays are tough for you, please know that you are not alone. I am thinking of all of you and I appreciate your fight. Keep fighting!