Thanks Giving 2019

Sunday, December 1, 2019 | 0 Comment(s)

As I get older, I've been taking giving thanks more and more seriously. As life gets more complex, more difficult, and less forgiving -- it becomes all the more pressing to spend time focusing on the good in one's life. Even if that success is just the mortar between bricks of shit in a wall that continues up past the desiccated fields and then onward, up and over the horizon.

I'm thankful to be here this Thanksgiving. Here in time. I'm thankful it isn't last year. I'm thankful to have been provided more students to engage and educate. I'm thankful that this academic process continues to be reciprocal and energizing.

I'm thankful to know who I can turn to for support. I have recommitted to those that are committed to me. My friendships feel reciprocal, even if I'm still gun shy after my experiences in the past few years. Recently, there have been moments when I experience spontaneous joy in a way that I thought I'd lost forever, not too long ago.

I'm thankful that my work keeps me focused on systematic inequalities in a way that promotes my constant empathy. Being empathetic takes work. And practice. It's all too easy to write off those who are less fortunate, or even just different than you, because you have a head full of tasks that you have to get done today, and not enough hours in the day to complete them. When your day is spent instilling empathy as a mindset to young adults - it  becomes near impossible to deny the humanity in every person I come across. And I'm thankful for those reminders.

I'm thankful for dogs. All dogs. Especially my dogs. Talk about empathy. These dogs have cuddled me when I was down, and forced me to exercise for my own health, even when the couch was warm and incredibly inviting. Grover's fur has absorbed my tears and Falcor's tongue has cleaned their tracks directly from my eyes until I couldn't help but break out in a giggle fit. And that isn't even touching on the love that swells inside me when I scratch their bellies or rest my forehead on the soft wrinkles of their massive foreheads. I'm so thankful to dogs. And a few friendly cats that I'm making acquaintance with get some special mentions here. I'm not saying I'm a cat person - but I do see now that some cats are pretty cool. Pretty cool indeed.

My wife. Oh my wife. So much thanks. I am eternally grateful for the honesty in our relationship. And I guess, in the same way, the trust that we can be honest with each other and that unconditionally, it will be ok. And to be clear, I'm NOT saying that our relationship is perfect. Far from it, if there is such a thing as "it" in the first place. But, I think we both follow the advice my Dad once gave me during a particularly hard time.  He said, "If you can't trust and be open with the person you chose to spend your life with, well then, you're really fucked." I continue to be thankful for said advice. I think he's right.

And while this isn't a complete list, lastly, I'm glad I'm writing this all down here on my blog. A place I am actively working on re-inhabiting. As I wrote many years ago, a writer writes because it is in them, a part of their nature. To not write causes a blockage in the system where a backlog of ideas and emotions clog up my headspace, waiting to be thrown down on a page and made real.

The past few years have been, well, surreal. And, uncoincidentally, silent.

Now it's time to reclaim the narrative as I begin replanting my roots in the greater Boston area, and begin to tell my story once again.