I’m thankful for life. Twice in mine I’ve nearly lost it, and no matter how dark things may get, I’m grateful to still draw breath. When I was eight, I developed severe anemia from a tick bite and very nearly didn’t make it. To this day, I have no memories of that summer, other than stories that have been told to me. When I was sixteen, I suffered a terrible head injury that quite literally almost killed me, and for a couple of days, my future was very much uncertain. I’m a slow learner, so it took a few years after that accident for me to realize just how lucky I am to be here. I spent too many years of my life mourning for what I lost, instead of being grateful for the life I still had. Today, I am wise enough to know that as long as we are on this earth, we have the greatest gift possible.
I’ve seen hard times. I’ve been about as desolate as a man can be, living in places that would have been considered condemned by many. I’ve spent many long, dark nights alone, weeping over my children and missing them more deeply than any words could describe. I’ve watched my career stall and sputter and go nowhere despite my best efforts to make something positive happen. I’ve been through difficulties, and no matter how badly things have gone or how dark my nights might have gotten, I’m glad to be here alive experiencing this life. Living life, breathing it in, and feeling it course through my veins are enough to be thankful for. Everything else, as they say, is just gravy.
I’m grateful for my life because it gives me the opportunity to continue giving my love to the people who deserve it: my sons, nieces, parents, sister, and friends. I’m grateful for the opportunity to grow old near the sea and sun, sharing my love as best as I can. I’m truly the luckiest man alive and have been blessed with more than any one person deserves. I would endure the dark days and low points again a thousand times just to have the good once more.
When you are feeling down or overwhelmed or fed up, come back and read this post. The peaks and valleys are inevitable. Difficulties and sorrow will come to everyone’s life, and all of us have moments when it seems like too much to endure, but that’s the price of admission. This journey we get to experience is priceless and amazing, and no matter how many people try to tear you down or make you feel as if your life isn’t important, you have to remember that you are a strong person who can overcome any obstacle and achieve any goal. Those people are not worth your time and energy, so only share yourself with those who enrich you and give you strength.
Life is beautiful. Life is precious. Life will be what you make of it. On this day, I am thankful for the life I have.