Thursday, November 21, 2013

I'm Thankful For… (2013 edition)

I likely won't be posting next week (which is American Thanksgiving—I'll be out of town at the Biltmore Estate with relatives, and I'll be settling in to my new apartment). Thanksgiving is a time of being thankful for what you have—though I try to give thanks to God all the time—and here are some things I'm thankful for:

  • You.
  • You readers have been quite encouraging to me—even if you just read it. (I can see the stats.) And then there's those of you who comment, discuss, ask questions… When I'm feeling down, as if nobody's cares about what I have to say, I can look at the stats, at your comments and remember that you find me interesting enough to read, and some of you find me interesting enough to read, comment, and follow me to other sites and comment there, too. Thank you.

  • The Internet.
  • Giving me a community to explore separate from my in-person one, the latter of which can feel lonely. That makes me sound pathetic, but you probably remember that I have a hormonal disorder. It's a ton easier to yank myself out of a mood swing when I can just hop somewhere else for a while.

  • Self-Publishing.
  • I've made no secret of the fact that my sales are low, but the very possibilities in self-publishing has helped me get off my butt and finish things. And it gives me a reason to do things like cover design and formatting, which are both relaxing—something I wouldn't have known without reason to play with them.

  • Wattpad.
  • Wattpad as a platform has been quite encouraging for me—and as a bonus for y'all, it's let me put First Draft Fridays in place, to force me to write, even when I don't feel like it, which can help me get out of the "don't feel like it" funk. I even got a nice e-mail last Friday, that I'm one of the most followed people over there, which is mind boggling. I'm still looking up that e-mail every so often to make sure I didn't imagine it.

  • My friends.
  • In person, online—I'm not distinguishing, here. We're all comfortable enough with each other and ourselves that we're even honest when asked, "What do you think of this?" We'll kindly point out when we're getting stuck in negative funks, or when we're being irrational, or when… You know, all those nice things that need pointing out for someone to improve as a person, rather than feeding each other what we want to hear. (Okay, there's a bit of that what-you-wanna-hear thing, too, but we're honest about it. I admittedly will sometimes use it as a lead-in for some satire, but my friends don't seem to mind—particularly because I stop when asked.)

  • God.
  • I'm Christian, as you likely know, and I do believe God speaks. Over the past few months, I've asked for some specific signs to reassure me, and every single one has happened. I have to do the math to know the statistic probability of 5 specific things happening spontaneously as prayed for, on the very day requested, is extremely small.

  • Life.
  • I've had several would-be-dead-but-for-the-grace-of-God events in my life. I'm actually glad for them, because they're reminders that 1. I have no idea when I'm going to die, 2. God wants me to be alive for now, and 3. Life's to be utilized*, not squandered. (*I'm using utilized in the formal sense, not the colloquial abuse that makes it synonymous with use.)

I could keep going, which is good. It's good to remind yourself of the good things in life, especially when bad things are happening—because you can't control what happens. You can only control your response and what you stew on.

It's healthier to focus on good things than bad—and you can choose to focus on those things.

If you do that, some people will think you (and possibly call you) naïve, due for a rude awakening. But those people aren't going to be happy no matter what you do. That's on them, not you.

What are you thankful for? Have any plans for Thanksgiving?


Popular Posts
(of the last month)