Monday, November 23, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving 2015: A Year of Thankfulness

Happy Thanksgiving 2015: A Year of Thankfulness - A post declaring what I have been thankful for during 2015.

I want to take a minute today, as we approach this Thanksgiving holiday, to let you all know about what I'm thankful for this year. I love doing posts like this, because it causes me to reflect on the previous twelve months and what they have meant in my life. Often, I find that while times of the year felt particularly wretched, it wasn't all bad. 

I spent some time, before writing this post, to look back on the previous Thanksgiving blog posts I've done on my old blog, The Truth About Blondes. (I stopped writing there earlier this year because I needed to set my grief down, and I couldn't do it without a complete fresh start.) You can find several of those posts here

My favorites are: 

2015 was quite a year. Aren't they always quite a year, regardless? I started this year with so much hope that this was my year, that the grief and pain of 2014 would be gone. It was for a while, then my mother's year anniversary hit. For whatever reason, (my therapist says it's quite common to feel horrible near anniversaries of traumatic experiences) I was in a state of misery. I started having panic attacks, I cried every day for thirty days, and I couldn't shake it. Then, the anniversary passed. Suddenly, warm temperatures came, the sun metaphorically, and literally, came out. I dove head first into spring and summer and built my patio oasis. I spent all summer engulfed in plants. 

Happy Thanksgiving 2015: A Year of Thankfulness // THE JOY BLOGIt healed me. 

I started noticing that little by little, and then almost overnight, I was feeling whole, or maybe almost whole, and it was miraculous. Glorious. Fantastic. Our home began to feel peaceful again, Justin relaxed, and I became healthy enough to handle a little change. He quit his well-paying-but-bad-for-his-health job. He took a huge risk and has started his Twitch Channel, and is becoming quite popular. It's become a regular source of income for us, and we hope to one day have it be one of the main sources! (Check him out here.) We became strapped to a zero-extras type budget, because he left his toxic, well-paying job to start fresh with new ideas. 

And the best part of all? We are happier than we have ever been. 

We buy almost nothing but the necessities, with a splurge few and far between of restaurant food, or a new shirt (usually on a big sale!), and we live below our means. We eat vegetables and herbs from my patio garden, we wait for movies to come out on iTunes so we can rent them for $3.99, and we use a family member's Netflix account. We spend more time focusing on our goals, than on consumerism. We laugh a lot, and have impromptu dance parties. We regularly spend an hour of time trying to convince the feral stray kitten, that has taken up residence on our patio at night, that she wants to be tamed. 

We have both begun to often say the phrase, "I really enjoy being married to you." 

Happy Thanksgiving 2015: A Year of Thankfulness // THE JOY BLOGOur relationship has been riddled with grief since we first met. We never had a honeymoon phase because he was in the military, and then my mother got cancer right after we got married. He's been out of the military since New Year's Day, and it's now been over eighteen months since my mother's passing. We are finally coming into a new life together.

This year I'm thankful for miracles. I'm thankful for a year of healing. I'm thankful for a year of growing -- growing within, growing my marriage, and growing my garden. I'm thankful for this blog. It has allowed me to keep my focus on happy things, instead of dwelling on my grief. I don't know what the future holds, no one really does. I'm sure, though, that it will be filled with more sadness, more laughs, more growth, and more impromptu dance parties.

And...what more could a girl need? 

(Oh yeah, the ability to tolerate lactose would be cool. I'd give my right kidney to be able to digest cheese again, but I can live without it.)

What are you thankful for this year? 

Please share in the comments!

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