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The New Year, And 01-01-2006 - 09:33 PM
I was inspired to write this list by another journaling site member. It’s my fifty-third birthday today and “time is of the essence” for those of us growing long-in-the-tooth. Better now than never!

My Grateful List - In no particular order:

1. I’m thankful that, throughout my life, I have been able to make friends easily. I suppose it helps that I’m friendly and have never been afraid of people. I got a birthday card two days ago from a friend I’ve had since I was thirteen and she moved to my little hometown. The photo image on the front depicts two “little old ladies” walking arm-in-arm along a sidewalk in a park. The inside of the card reads, “It’s nice knowing you have a friend who’ll be a friend forever.” In my opinion, there’s nothing richer in life than bonds like that.

2. I’m grateful to have been raised by parents who taught me to value education and who encouraged me to do my best in academic endeavors, ever since my first day of first grade. They always showed an interest in my teachers, courses, classmates, and school activities, and they helped with my homework and other scholastic projects. When I was young, we didn’t have the money for a dishwasher or automatic dryer in our house, but we had a set of encyclopedia.

3. I’m grateful that I was raised in a home environment free from prejudice towards those different than our family in regards to race, country of origin, religion, physical or intellectual ability, or sexual orientation. Because of my parents’ example, I have enjoyed life free of hatred and fear of those who are not the same as me.

4. I feel blessed to reside on a planet that is so rich with many thousands of animals, both domestic and wild; creatures that inhabit the air, water and land. I cannot imagine the sterile blandness of a world without these wondrous additions to enhance human life.

5. I appreciate the fact that I’m among the fortunate who have access to medical care -- knowledgeable and compassionate doctors, nurses and other medical personnel, which millions of the inhabitants of this earth must suffer without, because of their lack of access, availability or money to purchase the medicine they need to get better.

6. I’m lucky to have a spouse who exemplifies that which I treasure most in a partner: high ethics, admirable values, and compassion for others. He is 100 percent supportive of all my goals and endeavors. (If he wasn’t, I think it’s safe to say that he and I as a couple wouldn’t have lasted ten minutes!) He is among the most feminist of men I have ever met in my life. He is truly a treasure.

7. I feel fortunate that I can see, hear, speak, walk, eat and function normally. I’ve escaped major injuries and serous mishaps, in part from heeding good advice and practicing caution, and in part due to plain old luck.

8. I’m blessed to have a mother who, at age 80, is (probably!) healthier than I am. She is full of vibrancy and is a joy to everyone in her presence. I’m also thankful that my father lived in good health until age 80, and although he was terminally ill on his 81st birthday, he expressed his gratefulness for the life he had lived.

9. I’m thankful that for over a half-century of life, I have always had a place to live, enough food to eat, and clothes to keep me warm.

10. I’m grateful that, at age 53, I still feel capable. I feel strong. I feel that I still have a lot to give to the things in which I believe. I’m not close to letting up or shutting up. <Al Pacino voice from “Scent of a Woman“> “I’m just gettin’ started!”

mjd2491 said at 01-01-2006 - 09:45 PM
OK, I just have to ask this: Were you the "first baby" in your hometown? In my town, the first baby born each year gets all sorts of gifts, like $5 put into a savings account, a thermometer from the drug store, baby food from the grocery store..... just curious. Happy birthday!


gemsab said at 01-01-2006 - 10:02 PM
Happy Birthday, my dear friend Carmen!!!!!!!!! And may you have many, many more.........



jmberg said at 01-01-2006 - 11:14 PM
Happy Birthday Carmen!



carolinez said at 01-02-2006 - 10:26 AM
Happy Birthday Carmen, the list is a great idea. I think we all should do that, then maybe we could see what gifts we have instead of what we don't have. Thanks for the reminders. Have a wonderful New Year! Carol





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