|Me in Paris on our 3 day honeymoon, in 2008.|
This is just a little piece of thankfulness. This week I have been reflecting on how lucky I am, and feeling very thankful for it. I am filled with contentment, even though the ground beneath our feet doesn't feel as trustworthy as it once did. In some ways, what has happened in Christchurch has made me feel even more fortunate. Fortunate to have my little family and a weather-tight home, hot and cold water and a fully-functional sewerage system. Those things that most of us took for granted until very recently. Of course there are always dreams to be dreamed, and some people might say I don't have a flash car, a high-powered job or a fancy house. They would be right, but I feel no need for those things.
I have enough, no, an abundance, without any of those. . .
We have our own little family unit, small but very strong. I have a son, who is more amazing than I ever dreamed possible. He is the source of so much love and happiness, and I can't imagine life without him. I have the kindest wife imaginable, who loves me as I am. She is the butter on my bread and the jam on my toast! The one who picks me up when I stumble and encourages me when I doubt myself. I am so glad we found each other (even though at the start of our relationship, a certain teenager who lived with us for a while memorably told us "You two had to end up together. . . you were the last two left!" Bless her!) We have a dog, who is a constant source of unconditional love, exuberance, moulting hair and muddy paw prints. Sonny Jim got it right when he said that our family didn't feel complete until we got Frodo.
As well as a loving family far and near, I have wonderful friends. Some local, but most a world away geographically, if not emotionally. Once again I feel blessed. Some of these friendships have endured for more than two decades, and are amongst the most significant relationships of my life.
After switching employers, cutting my hours to allow more time with my son, and a complete change of emphasis within the same job title, I have a job which is fascinating and I really love doing. I get to work with babies/young children and their whānau & families in their own homes, which is a real privilege. I know I can make a difference, and that's a good feeling. I even get to do some work around breastfeeding, which is a real passion of mine. The post-grad study I am doing at the moment just makes me more certain that I made the right choice in changing jobs.
Our house may not be big or flash, but it's home. It is full of love and to me, that is far more important than how tidy it is, how much it is worth, or how well-kept the garden is!
So yes, I really love my little life. Life is good… and I realise just how lucky I am.
PS Just re-read this, and it seems to me that one of the main reasons I appreciate my life so much right now, is that there have been times, both as a teenager and as a young-ish adult, when life was not good. Not good at all, in fact it was decidedly unpleasant. But, isn't it the dark which makes us appreciate the light?