Gratitude

Sometimes it’s nice to give thanks, to be grateful.

The thing I am most grateful for right now is surviving this year.

I don’t know who is responsible for that – thoughts of family and friends crowd my head. Of blue skies and sun-drenched mornings. Of birds that look at me through the window like they know me. Of songs that still create the same ache in my heart year after year. Of the stories of writers I love. Of the poets – ah, the poets – you have saved my life more times than I have seen the last light of the day and you don’t even know it. You are the tellers of the truth.

A while ago it was dark. In my room. In my head. I couldn’t hear anything but the wind pounding in my ears. It reminded me of the swish of seashells held to ears, as if another world lurked inside.

There was an hour in that dark that was darker than the dark where I thought that if I closed my eyes I would sleep forever and not see the morning light ever again. It was touch and go. I was held in the fists of the gods of the night. I could feel their power dragging me further and further into the shadows.

But I held on, loosening their grip with my shoulders until the light from the morning split the dark in two. I saw the mirror in the hallway, speckled with light and the remnants of shadow. There was no reflection but the light and shadow suggested an image that maybe wasn’t an image at all but a memory of every reflection caught and held.

And I knew in that moment that the gods of the night couldn’t have me just yet; that there was too much in this world I couldn’t say goodbye to.

And I knew that there is so much more to know and feel and be.

And I knew that the magic doesn’t fail unless you let it.

So I would like to say to whoever is responsible.

With complete sincerity.

Thank you for this day.

It is all I need.

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20 thoughts on “Gratitude

  1. I’m glad to hear that you are feeling so thankful. I could probably do with feeling more thankful myself, but I’m a bit of a miserable so-and-so, and I tend to focus too much on the negative. Maybe it’s because I didn’t get out of Scotland soon enough? 🙂

    http://petrichoric.wordpress.com

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  2. Glad to see you’re feeling thankful. Sometimes we lose sight of the things we should be thankful for in the midst of all the shitty things we could do without quite nicely, thank you very much.

    From this I get the negativity as the darkness that tries to get ahold of us in the wee hours, that makes us feel worthless, alone and questioning our validity in life.

    Selma, the one you should be thanking is YOU.
    You made it happen. Your will, your refusal to back down, to fight for whats’s right, to stand up and say “This ISN’T right and I’m not going to stand for it!”
    There is a strong survival instinct in us all, your’s kicked in when you’d finally had enough.
    So bravo to you my dear.
    The kudos are YOURS
    xo

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  3. Ah yes, I remember that gratitude. I remember walking back from the school, day after day, just looking up at the sky or some poor unsuspecting bird perched on a tree, and saying thank you. I would say it out loud too. I didn’t care. I just felt as if someone or something had saved me. But we save ourselves, really, Selma.

    Big hugs to you xx

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  4. It’s always gratitude that takes me out of those moments. Now I try to make gratitude a *practice.*

    I’m grateful you had that moment. I’m grateful to count you among my favourite bloggerly finds.

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  5. A beautifully written trip through the stages that so many of us have experienced. Except, when you write about it, it’s all things poetic. “but the memory of every reflection caught and held” wow….one of the best reasons of all for sticking around as long as you can (how about another 50 or so years!!!) your amazing and one of a kind writing talent Sel. You have that in spades. And you have so many many people who love you, including me.

    Hugs my friend, G 🙂

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  6. Tam and I agree that this was beautiful and we’re both thankful that the gods of the night backed away. You are such a treasure, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that YOUR words helped someone else kick free from the darkness.

    Much love,
    Karen and Tam

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  7. truly stunning words selma. you have a very special way of seeing,
    somehow it has a way of bringing out the deeper truths in all of us.
    to you! cheers!

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  8. Selma, My dear. It is the Lord God who is responsible for giving life and drawing us to life. He’s the one you need to give your thanks to. I am giving Him thanks for keeping you alive and giving you hope.

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  9. Hi Selma, you are a truth teller among truth tellers, and yes, friends are so important as mirrors for reality checks and occasionally, as therapists to offer you better alternatives.
    However, I am not sure Gratitude is an appropriate response to anything that extends past friends you choose and friends who choose you as special… everyone and everything else is just how nature is. Does an ant feel gratitude when it finds a dead bird? Stretching things a bit. But to set aside a time to appreciate the wonders of nature of which we are a part, is useful if it caues us to evaluate all the thngs that need to happen to get a turkey on the table. Absolutely amazing but…at the same time so very fragile, as are all our systems that keep us going, natural and social!
    It is an honour to know you Selma and I am thankful I stumbled into your life. Appreciative Thanksgiving!

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  10. “And I knew that the magic doesn’t fail unless you let it.”

    You are so full of beautiful, beautiful magic. Gratitude works both ways. I’m sure whoever is responsible is grateful you choose to live a life full of wonder & share it with others. I know I am.

    ♥♥♥

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  11. Hi PETRICHORIC:
    Haha. I know what you mean about the Scots. Don’t worry, I do the same thing myself. I think it’s part of our makeup. The trick is to change the way you think. I’m still in the process of doing that but gradually, it is happening 😀

    Hi CATHY:
    Awww. Thanks for saying that. I don’t know where I got that strength from but I am so thankful I have it. It has sustained me through many an early in the morning dark session. You really are such a kind and supportive person. I do so appreciate it!

    Hi RACHEL:
    I will definitely do that. You too xx

    Hi RELUCS:
    We do save ourselves but sometimes we need a little push from that bird or a song or something else, don’t we? It is nice (and comforting) that we have those signs to help us along. Thanks for the lovely hugs!

    Hi JENNIFER:
    And I, you. Truly. Gratitude really is an important part of the day It often makes me change my focus and reminds me of what’s important!

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  12. Hi MELEAH:
    It is a joy to know you too. You really are an amazing person!

    Hi GERALDINE:
    I would love to stick around for another 50 years even though that would mean I was 95. But I will be totally eccentric by then so it will be a lot of fun. I hope you’re around then too. We can hang out together and sort out the world’s problems. Hey, we could do it now! Love you X

    KAREN & TAM:
    You are going to make me cry. If I have helped just one person I would be so happy. That’s what writing and sharing experiences is all about for me. Thank you, my dear friends, thank you xxx

    Hi TIPOTA:
    What an awesome thing to say. I am so touched!

    Hi GABRIELLE:
    LOLZ. I always feel that I have a little Obi-Wan Kenobi hovering on my shoulder. Haha.

    Hi GROOVY:
    Thank you for your prayers and your wisdom. They mean a lot to me!

    Hi STAFFORD:
    I am definitely grateful to have stumbled across you too. You certainly always brighten my day. It is a pleasure to know you!

    Hi DAOINE:
    Great to be here. Hugs right back to you XXX

    Hi AINE:
    Awww, hon. That’s it – I’m going to have a little cry now. But totally in a good way. Love you XX

    Hi ROSHAN:
    What a lovely way to put it. I am so touched you said that. Thank you, my friend!

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  13. I’d like to hang out with you anytime Sel.

    We would make a great pair of old darlings wouldn’t we (red hats and high heels perhaps!!!) I’ll put the kettle on when you can get here.

    Hugs again, G

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  14. There’s a song we used to sing at chapel when I was a teen. Your post reminded me of it.
    “It only takes a spark to get a fire going,
    And soon all those around can warm up in its glowing;
    That’s how it is with God’s Love,
    Once you’ve experienced it,
    Your spread the love to everyone
    You want to pass it on. ”

    Light and shadow….. light splitting the dark in two. a new awakening? A reckoning that there is more love to give and receive….. and because of your gift of writing, you have passed it on. lovely xx

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