(Hang in there - the soppy bits are at the end :)
I am grateful that I have people who love me.
I am grateful that I have had opportunities - and been able to capitalize on them through hard work - to get a great education and good income.
I am grateful that I have had an amazing life, and done some really amazing things.
I am grateful that my words - rantings, ravings, prognostication, or just wisdom - reach an audience who can enjoy and appreciate and take meaning from my expressions.
I am grateful to have found a person with whom to share my life, and I look forward to spending time with him every day.
Until a little over a week ago, I knew an amazing woman. Lots of energy, very self-assured, a school teacher who shaped lives and thus made the world a better place. Her memorial service was last week. There were nearly NINE HUNDRED people there. She was 37; it was cancer.
I am grateful to wake up every morning; I can work with that.
In high school, I knew a woman who had been born with a hole in her spine. She would never know the sensation of running. She would never know the feeling of making fists with her toes in the sand. She would never walk her crying baby to sleep. As far as I know, she is still alive.
I am grateful all my limbs work; I can work with that.
During the four years I was an undergraduate, I helped bury three different friends, at three different times, due to three different events.
I will never resent growing old. Too many people never get to do that.
On this day "of thanksgiving," I think about a lot of things, some of them cynical (it's what I am), but I also look forward to seeing friends and family, and reminding myself what is really important.
Whatever else you do today, find a friend or relative and say "I care about you. I wanted you to know, just in case tomorrow never comes."
And you, dear reader - I care about you. I care that you breathe, and I wish for you great joy in life. I thank you for reading this, for it means you have shared your time - a slice of your life - with me. Thank you.