Something inside me broke wide open this year. My internal Grand Canyon stands gaping and blank, empty and deep. I'm not entirely certain what caused the rupture. Maybe I just emptied myself like a holiday UPS truck and nothing was left over. Maybe I'm unwell. Maybe the MAMA scientific experiment of "how much is too much" got really real, know what I'm sayin'? I've tried curling into my voids' sappy lap in the fetal position. I've tried running to leave enough dust to fill my void. I've tried eating all my feelings. I've tried disappearing into words, into crowds and into my freakin' yoga trapeze. I've prayed. Heavens above, have I prayed. I'm a work in progress. Good NEWS though! There are a few gears I can shift to that help. Nothing helps me more than living in Gratitude. Gratitude is more of a disposition. Gratitude begets joy. Joy is the only way forward. Period. Everything else can and will pull me down or backward.
At the risk of being the ump-teenth blogger to discuss the Law of Gratitude, I'm-a-gonna brave it. Like a bold walk into COSTCO the day before Thanksgiving for that "one thing" you forgot. Sure, the Blog-o-sphere (and COSTCO's parking lot) are overflowing which doesn't bode well for kindly temperaments. However, I've got truths to share.
Here's the deal: If you are a sad person by nature, disposition or chemistry, I'm going to bet that Gratitude isn't high on the priority list. I've been there. Your list might read more like "Stand, shower, eat, sleep, repeat" and that is AOK. At the risk of being entirely correct, I'm going to add one small precursor to "Stand". That is simply to "Say Thanks". I don't give a rat's butt if, after a brief survey of your environment, you came up with "nada" or "hot water" to be grateful for. Shun the "nada"-thought and embrace the "hot water"-thought like it's your Chris-Pine-look-a-like prom date wearing a tux. Say "I'm grateful for this magical spout which spontaneously gives me both steam and water to cleanse my very awesome self" over the "nada". You can even write it on the wall of the shower or sing it loud with a Celine Dion song. I won't tell and she won't know. Find something to be grateful for and you will start to feel well....full. Warmth will start somewhere in the center of you and spread outward.
I've been blessed by adding a little urgency to my thanking. Just turn up the fire under your arrss a bit. Be grateful with gusto. Say it loud, say it soon. Every thank you, pleasantry, kindness, compliment, smile or just plain 'ole warmth sends waves of blessings your direction. Aside from just feeling better, you just contributed a little light on the planet. Burn bright baby! The world needs that gratitude. It needs the light you are and the light we create by being kind and grateful.
Every single one of the lepers the Savior cleansed felt gratitude. Only one expressed gratitude. She was the one that wasn't just healed. She was "made whole", complete, full. Expressions of gratitude can take many forms. Smile, compliment someone, wink, laugh, send a random kind text, snuggle, serve (this one is gold), hold a door open, share a thought, help out, love, watch a sunrise, pause to see the kid smile all the way when you told him he is a treasure, listen without an agenda. There are infinite ways to show, send or shine forth gratitude and each one of them makes me a better person.
It sounds like a happy way to live because it is. It's truth.
Feast on, my friends.