Last Thanksgiving, I was thankful for my yellow latex dishwashing gloves. I was thankful for other things too — being unemployed, my awesome family — and while some things have changed (yay for paychecks), others haven’t (hey mom). The biggest thing that hasn’t changed, will never change, is the importance of stopping to take a moment and feel gratitude — especially for the things that seem like challenges.
This year I’m thankful for:
Being so stressed out about grad school apps that I feel like I’m going to vomit blood. This is what it feels like to really want something. Hey, self, remember this feeling. Hold onto it even when the stress passes.
Neglecting the blog that I love. Sorry to wantonly abandon you guys — I adore you, I truly do — but every day that I beat myself up for not writing here is another day that I’ve spent writing fiction instead. The original idea behind keeping this blog was to help me find my voice, figure out from muscle memory how to make words do stuff even when I have nothing left to say. And now, miracle!, I’m actually doing it when it counts.
Being single and having no plans to change that. Every once in a while I think about how nice it was to wake up to someone, how I’ll eventually want that again. But waking up is such a small portion of the day. I think of the way I go to bed now, late, after a long night of writing, crashing into the mattress like I’m falling out of an airplane. On my best nights of writing, my skin visibly burns after a few hours — red flush that starts on my stomach that creeps over my body and gives off heat like an engine. I would burn a hole through someone else. I cannot make room to hold someone else inside of me, not if I want to keep working this way, maybe not ever.
Sometimes the best part of my day is eating fat-free yogurt. I like to stare contemplatively at the spoon and pretend I’m in one of those vapid yogurt commercials. I am thankful, sometimes, to be a woman.
Loathing my job most days. It’s going to be so easy to leave in August.
Being an unforgivable, unconscionable oaf. I come from the “not wisely but too well” school of love. Unlike Othello, I’ve never straight-up smothered a dude with a pillow; but I do have a rare gift for saying the bad thing at the worse time, making the unthinkable blunder. Yet somehow I’ve managed to surround myself with family and friends who love me anyway. If I were less of a lowly wretch, I probably wouldn’t need such amazing friends, but I am, and I have them, and I am deeply blessed.
Happy Thanksgiving, kittens. Enjoy the family and friend time, and definitely enjoy the pie. And, dudes, when you do the dishes, seriously, yellow latex dish gloves. Your hands will thank you.