I used to be better at this gratitude thing.
When I started this blog, it was about having a place to celebrate small, quirky victories—the often ethereal stuff that makes a life rich, vibrant. I reread little pieces from years back—pieces about photography, adobo peppers, tack hammers, socks, Mr. Rogers… Why did I stop? I got lazy and moved to posting others people’s poetry. There’s nothing wrong with other people’s poetry; I’m fond of it, and I have several favorite poets, but it somehow got me off the hook. A recent visit to Portland yielded time with intimate people in my life. The space between visits was too long, but something really good opened for me there that warrants putting myself back on the hook, creatively.
So, today I give myself permission to gush gratitude for a few things.
My daughter is now ten. A radiant, talkative ten. She grows and changes weekly, sometimes daily, I swear. She is wise and kind and interested in the world. Her sense of humor is becoming pointed and skilled as she navigates her developing sense of the absurd and ridiculous. Her outlook and engagement with others brings me great hope. I never thought being a mother would bring such opportunities for managing myself—the more I accept myself, the better mother I become. This has been my mantra for a while now. Being a mother is, as I’ve stated before, my single greatest joy.
I am halfway through a PhD, having finally figured out a question and entrance point for my dissertation that puts a particular place for which I care deeply, Rock Creek, front and center. The next two years will see me researching and making connections in an attempt to answer this question. The thought of this brings me exhilaration. As my advisor said, “Why approach a dissertation any other way?”
I feel better. This is a good start.