A Letter from Andy: How Thankful Are You?

November is the month we celebrate Thanksgiving. Themes like the first Thanksgiving in America with the Pilgrims and Indians decorate store fronts and classroom bulletin boards. Cornucopias with produce spilling out are pictured on the front of church schedules and corn shocks and pumpkins are displayed on the steps of public buildings, representative of our bountiful harvest. All these things we are thankful for and so many more. Heck, even social media has become a way to demonstrate our thankfulness.

Did you notice last year there were many Facebookers who posted daily what they were thankful for during the month of November? It was called 30-Days of Thanks, I think. Most started out pretty strong and went along quite well for a couple weeks with obvious increasing difficulty. Then several days before the actual Thanksgiving Day they seemed to run out of steam. Wow! Is it that hard for us to come up with 30-things we are thankful for? It’s easy to recall one thing each of us is thankful for at the table before we cut the turkey. But, should 30-things be that difficult? If you don’t believe me, try it yourself. Or check out Facebook. There aren’t that many posters doing it this year. I guess they learned how hard it was.

Don’t get me wrong. I am no better than most on Facebook, even though I have a multitude of things to be thankful for including life itself. Family, plenty to eat, a peaceful place to live, good friends, good business associates, and on and on. However, someplace around twelve I start to run out of steam, too. I mean being thankful for a hot beverage in the morning might be a stretch…maybe not. Anyway, I have decided that I should just pick one thing each month to be thankful for and concentrate on that all month long. It is somewhere near my threshold and perhaps yours too. Plus, the process will make me mindful of being thankful all year long rather than just in the month of November. If you all like the idea, I will start out each month’s entry here with what I am thankful for that month.

Next month will be month two. Since month one is the official month of Thanksgiving and I’ve been giving this some thought already, I am going to start with more than one.

  1. Health: Those who have good health know how important it is. Those who’ve lost it strive to get it back and those who’ve regained it give thanks over and over daily.
  2. Family: (number 1 & 2 go together in my mind)       Good family helps maintain one’s good health, both mental and physical. I treasure my family and I am not embarrassed to state out loud to anyone who will listen how thankful I am for them, each and every day.
  3. Community: I just returned from visiting friends and family in New Jersey and that state North of here whose name will go unmentioned. I found the traffic unbearable, which made the amount of time to get a short distance around town unbelievable. It is a blessing to live in a small community that is affordable and easy to traverse. Additionally, it is situated in the Heartland of the Greatest Country in the World and for that I give thanks.
  4. Country: This great nation in which we have the privilege of voting. We just exercised that right and whether you are a Democrat, Republican, or Independent you have got to be thankful for it and for the representative government we have here in the USA. Win or lose your voice is heard. Do not let any pundit or cynic tell you otherwise.

Health, Family, Community, and Country. Seems like a good start to “12-months of Thanksgiving.” What do you think? Want to join me in listing eleven more things that you are thankful for? Or do you only show gratitude in November? I mean, really, “How Thankful Are You?”

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