I'm sitting here at our computer, looking across the room at the sofa. Where my little Bug is sound asleep right now. I keep catching myself just watching him, smiling a little at how he's restless and the way he looks when he's asleep. I really don't need a holiday to remind me to be thankful, but it sure is a great way to let those important to you know that you are.
I'm thankful for so many things in my life right now. Some are everyday miracles and blessings. Some are one time shots, that have happened at just the right moment.
I am thankful for the NFL. No, really, I am. :) Every Sunday, my husband has a couple of different opportunities to sit down and bond with our sons. I watch the three of them debating the skills of different players and arguing the calls of the officials; listening in as Coach takes every chance he gets to teach them something new about the sport or the position the boys play on their own teams. I love hearing them discuss the conduct of certain players, and whether or not its sportsman-like. I don't even mind providing the endless supply of pizza rolls and chips and salsa.
I am thankful for those mornings when someone wakes up before their alarm clocks go off. These are the mornings when Coach will roll over, pull me closer to him, and just hold me. These are the mornings when Bug will climb into bed with me and snuggle, forgetting for just a little while that he's too old anymore to do that. These are the mornings when I am able to spend some quiet time with Jock, talking about how he wants his day at school to go. These are also the mornings I can just lay in bed, listening to all the sounds around me; knowing that I have one more day to love my family.
I am thankful for macaroni and cheese, for it enables me to spend precious time with my sons and husband at night instead of obsessing over what to make for dinner. It also encourages my boys to spend time with me in the kitchen, learning a valuable life skill and just hanging out.
I am thankful for the holes in the knees of Bug's jeans, and our doorbell ringing at 8:00 AM on a Saturday morning. It means that he's outside playing, having finally mastered enough control over himself and his quirks to make friends with boys that enjoy hanging out with him. He spent a rough couple of years when we first moved out here, trying so hard to fit in despite his ADHD and other inner struggles.
I am thankful for the constant texting that Jock does. For like Bug, this means he's found friends that he shares things in common with. It also is a great tool for teaching him responsibility, in a way that he's unaware of!
I am thankful that the first 9 years of my marriage were.... how to put this nicely? .... not so great. Actually, yeah, I really am. Surviving those years together, seeing what we've accomplished and the awesome kids we managed to turn out in spite of the suckiness... its amazing. Coach and I have never loved each other more, never been more supportive of each other, never been more in tune with each other. Heck... we've never even liked each other as much as we do now! I know I have a greater appreciation of the man I married. I am more able to see all that he really is, rather than all that I wanted him to be. I am able to relax in comfortable non-paranoia when he doesn't come home exactly on time. I can now be ok with him going out for a couple of hours after work with the guys, because I know that doesn't mean he doesn't want to be here. Because we lived through times together that should have sent us packing, I am able to completely and totally believe him when he tells me that his life with me is exactly where he wants to be.
I am thankful for the stubborn streak that I inherited from my mom. Every time I dig in my heels on some random issue, it reminds me that I inherited my stubbornness from her. And as long as she remains so stubborn and determined, she will keep fighting the disease that would love nothing more than to break her will. And she will keep beating it.
I am thankful for the babysitter my mom had for my brother and I when we were younger and she was newly divorced from my gene donor. That sitter had a brother that was an amazing man. He took my brother and I into his heart, and gave us the steady, loving male influence we so desperately needed. He took two little kids and made them feel like they were important people in someone's life. He gave my mom his unconditional support, and an ear when she needed a friend. He helped out with the chores she couldn't keep up with while she was working full time and raising two kids. He took these three broken, brittle hearts, and took them into his keeping. That phenomenal man became my mom's husband. But best of all, he became my dad.
I am thankful for all the imperfections in my life, and the imperfect people that surround me. Through all of this, with all of them, I am able to remind myself that unconditional love is better than anything else could ever be.
This Thanksgiving, I hope you all are reminded of the little things to be thankful for on a daily basis. Enjoy the turkey, but enjoy the time spent with loved ones more.
And if you find yourself with any extra pumpkin pie? Send it my way! Throw a dollop of Cool Whip on top, and you would have made me a very happy woman!