My mom always made my brothers and I, write “thank you” notes and cards growing up. Whether it was Christmas or our birthdays, we had to all sit down and painstakingly scribble down everything we liked about our gift(s). I was not fond of this practice and I am pretty sure my brothers felt the same way.
So when I had my own kids, it was with great pleasure that I too, continued the tradition. It was like de ja vu as I passed out the paper, cards and pens to my three children, admonishing them to be grateful, even when they didn’t feel like it.
The discipline of practicing gratitude at a young age, would prove to be one of the best lessons in setting the foundation for living a grateful life.
If we are aware enough we go from being grateful for what others offer to being grateful for life experiences and then just for life itself.
I often find myself now, moved by nature, affected by its motion, stillness and power………..the language of gratitude in the storm clouds, the ocean as it pounds the rocky shoreline, the flower as it bends gently to the wind.
Stirring in me, a smile, a tear, and a fullness of heart that overflows in every cell of my being.
As I live authentically, the lesson of being grateful set by my mother over 30 years ago, has become a way of life.
I hope that one day too, my own children will see the impact that the discipline of gratitude will afford them.
What amazes me
Is that before we can count
we are taught to be grateful
for what others do.
As we are broken open
by our experience,
We learn to be grateful
for what is.
And if we live long enough
and deep enough
and authentically enough,
becomes a way of life.