Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. Why? For one thing, the whole day is centered around food, friends, and family. That’s obvious. It’s also centered around being thankful. I know that’s obvious too, but it’s a whole day to remind yourself of how good you have it. No matter what you’re going through, there’s always something to be thankful for, and that’s the key. Sometimes you have to pull it out of the rubble, but you’ll find it if you do.
Last Thanksgiving, my life was in turmoil. The whole year was the year of one loss after another. Another time I experienced that amount of loss was when I was committed to Topeka State hospital in the early 80s. I had lost my job of four years, the longest I have ever worked in my life. I lost my apartment, all my belongings, and my social life. I also lost all that was familiar to me in the cosy little town outside of Wichita. I spent a year trying to gather my thoughts, my life, my new direction, whatever that was.
This year is different. Yes, I lost the life I knew, my health, my job, my apartment, my social life, my cozy little town, and much of my belongings, but this time was different. I may not know what I’m moving toward, but I know I am not alone and I have a purpose. It’s an exciting time of transition, of surprises, of having a clean slate. All of this was with my full consent even though I had no idea what was in store. I moved into Roz’s house, sight unseen. She tried to describe my area of the house, so I had a good idea, but so much was unknown. The transition was difficult. My MS acted up the first night, and my skin broke out in welts that I swore were mosquito bites. I finally went to a doctor who said it was dermatitis and gave me steroids and antibiotics. The welts disappeared after a month, thank goodness, but for most of the first six months, I felt like a fish out of water at my new place.
Now, nearly a year later, I just can’t imagine still living my old life. I have 7 roommates now, yes seven! It’s a miracle I am here. Having even one roommate was something I swore I would never do, but this feels so right. My roomies have their own lives. They are all respectful and peaceful and clean and quiet. All of them! This giant home is a miracle. My life is a miracle. I am freer than I’ve ever been. I am financially stable even though I only work part time. The key for me is living beneath my means no matter what my income is. This situation allows me to do that. The irony is I feel more abundant than ever. Abundance has little to do with how much money you make or what you own. Abundance, for me, is about the day-to-day life, the moment that is now. Nothing beats that. I am thankful for the miracle that is my life.