A Time for Reflection


I have been contemplating this post for days now and am still uncertain exactly what I want to write. My mind these days alternates between intense contemplation and a strange white noise like a state of shock. The past five years or so for me have been one strange and at times terrifying roller coaster of life events. 2016 proved to be one of the most challenging, both personally and as a nation. And it has yet to play itself out -- a little over a month until the new year, it's almost incomprehensible to think what could happen in those five weeks... During one of the most turbulent times in our nation's history, when millions of citizens stand in horror watching, what at times feels like a complete dismantling of the country we grew up in and hundreds of Native Americans are brutally beaten along the Dakota Pipeline protest, I know I am not alone is saying it has been hard to rally around this holiday.

However, I suppose it is times such as these, when it is darkest before the light, when it is hardest to say "thank you" that it is more important than ever to remind ourselves of that which we are grateful for, no matter how small or seemingly insignificant to the rest of the world. In all honesty we should do this every day, but it is our human nature to become weighed down in the preoccupation with that which we cannot control or are desperately searching control of. It is easy to forget to count our blessings, however limited, and remind ourselves of that which we DO have, instead of coveting and lamenting that which we do not. We are upon this mass of spinning stardust in a fathomless universe for but a brief amount of time. Life is hard. It hurts. It seems pointless sometimes. It feels overwhelming many days. Especially in these times.

That is why this exercise is important. Here are a few of the many things that I am deeply thankful for this year...

  • My beautiful friends and family around the world who have shown their support in extraordinary ways this year.

  • From this support I was able to get the surgery I desperately needed.

  • The fact that I have a truly remarkable significant other who, despite how very, very hard this past year was and emotionally draining, supported me, got me through my health crisis, and is still here.

  • I still have a job, a place to live, and a roof over my head.

  • I am still able to write and create art.

  • I am thankful that I am seeing people stand up to injustice in record numbers in this country.

  • Bernie Sanders. Self-explanatory...

Like I keep saying, the next month, and the next four years, could be very trying. Hold those you love close and try to mend fences with those you may have had falling outs with. Be appreciative for the little things. Say "thank you" more often. To others, to the universe, and to yourself. We're going to need that to get through this together.

Much love to you all! Now I will leave you with a bit of Thanksgiving Day humor to lighten the mood...

XOV''''VOX

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