It's Thanksgiving day and I am really trying to stay positive. It's not easy. I can't be with my children and Mother as my kids are grown adults with jobs and the risk to my mother and I is too high. I practice what I preach to people. I can't take risks while asking others not too. I'm in this awful trailer with 5 electric heaters running to keep it warm. And I can't stop thinking about the over 2300 people who died yesterday and who will die today, reported or not. But I have so much to be thankful for too. This day is about remembering those things and holding them close to your heart. So lets do this!
Okay so, I am thankful for my husband. He is my rock, sounding board and best friend. He supports me in my craziness no matter what. He has been amazing in the last 10 months of me working night and day on archiving and reporting on the pandemic. He is so proud of me. More than I am able to be of myself. He makes me feel like a person worthy of love and praise and I can't thank him enough.
I am thankful for my children. I love them so much. My oldest, 22, graduated college this year and has a brand new job working for the Federal Government in the labor department with a starting pay of 53K a year. She did all this during the pandemic! My baby girl has been bringing me joy since the moment I knew I carried her in my womb. It didn't matter how young I was. I knew the world would be better for her being in it. My Foster son graduated Highschool last year and moved out. He has been a little lost lately but he is such an amazing man. He plays guitar like me and rides a motorcycle! He is so sensitive and kind and loving. We are very close. My youngest turns 20 next month! I haven't seen her since she graduated from high school and it breaks my heart. She joined the army and I am so proud of her. Before I got the chance to visit her on base the pandemic hit. I miss her but am thankful for her existence and service to our country. She is my independent one. I always knew she would leave Vermont in search of adventure.
I am thankful for my mother. We have a complicated relationship but are still very close. She is not just my mom but my friend. Those that know me, know I had a very hard upbringing. I was pretty much on my own by 12. But I am so thankful that my mother got help and we were able to build an amazing relationship after I grew up. I love her very much and forgive her for the mistakes she made. I am so thankful I got the chance to do that. She is high risk not just because of her age but she has an auto immune disorder like I do. She turned 71 last month and I go to her house once a week to get her mail, groceries and visit with her. I swear I will never let her go to a nursing home. I worked in them. If she hits a point where it's not save for her to live on her own we will have her move in with us. It's another reason getting a decent home is so important. Family doesn't abandon family. My father died this year without us ever being able to make amends and it's something that will be with me the rest of my life. He was sick. I know that. He just wasn't strong enough to get the help he needed in this lifetime. I pray he's found peace.
I am thankful for this crappy trailer! No! Seriously I am! I have a roof over my head which is more than many. It may be cold and a little dangerous but it does it's job. And the low cost of living here has let me save up some money to get a house. That leads me to the next thing I am thankful for...
All of you reading this! When I set up the GoFundMe to raise money to get out of this rat trap I never expected anyone to donate. I'm still 2k away from my goal but the $900 raised so far puts me that much closer to getting out of here and Lord willing, it will be enough to make the difference. I could not do what I do without the love and support you all give me. I've made friends I will have for the rest of my life working on coronavirus and I am so thankful for each and every one of you.
I am thankful for me. I don't mean that in a narcissistic way but in a self love kind of way. I spent most of my life thinking I was worthless. I didn't know who I was. But the last of that dropped away this year and now I know who I am and I love myself. More than that I LIKE myself. I've had to struggle so hard to overcome my past and while there is still a long way to go, I am thankful for all the progress I have made. In the past I never would have stopped and thanked myself but now I know that I deserve to be kind to me. A gift born of everything else I said I am thankful for. I couldn't have gotten here without everyone else.
Even in the darkest times there is reason for thanks. It's a lesson I learned young but one that has stuck. And it's not just being thankful because people have it worse off than you. It's being thankful for the good things period. In spite of, or perhaps BECAUSE of the hardships in your life. No matter how good or bad my life gets I will always be thankful for the things I've written about here. I will hold them close to me in the dark and they will help me find my way back to the light.
Be good to each other. Be good to yourselves. And have a very happy Thanksgiving.