Gratitude is not a natural state of my being. I think I’ve said that many times on the blog. You, dear readers, know I believe in gratitude. In fact, I believe as sober and recovering alcoholics and addicts We owe a debt of gratitude, but it just doesn’t happen for me like that. It takes a little work, a little warming up, a little letting go. You have to get inside of my crazy head to understand me when I say that gratitude lists didn’t do a lot for me for many years. Even now I kind of roll my eyes when I get out that little sobriety notebook and start jotting down a quick list.

Dear God, I am so grateful for:

  • my 2 legs
  • Godiva chocolate
  • the fact that I’m not peeing myself in an alley somewhere
  • thank you for the children and JM
  • thank you for the humble mango, the best of all fruits!
  • for the fact that the neighbor’s dogs didn’t impale themselves on something trying to squeeze their way into my yard.

And on and on it goes. Me (in my head) trying not to just be grateful for the obvious (I need to be way beyond that at 11 years, right?) but trying to make a deeply appropriate admission of gratitude for more than the mundane.  And you know what, my version of gratitude is a little nuts, but that’s okay. The point is, I recognize some things about gratitude:

  • It is impossible to be hateful and grateful at the same time. (BAhahahaha!) I once told a woman in the program that her just saying that made me feel hateful inside.  But as corny as it is, it’s actually true.
  • Grandiosity is the mortal enemy of gratitude. Because when I walk around thinking I’m entitled to it…there’s not any reason to offer any real thanks for it.
  • Gratitude is more than being thankful, it’s about appreciation.  Click here for my take on the difference.

So with that in mind, here’s my Monday morning gratitude list:

  • I’m in awe of my husband and his 15 years of sobriety and the fact that I’m still married after all these years.
  • My children inspire and astound me. They also exhaust me, and I appreciate their enthusiasm for life.
  • I am so thankful that I have the wits about me to work towards changing anything in my life I don’t like.
  • I appreciate that today there is work for me and I will earn a fair living doing it.
  • When I sleep tonight, it will be in a safe house, a warm bed, on clean sheets. This is a simple luxury that was not my story for many many years.
  • Thank you for all the newcomers in my life lately! They are keeping me out of self.
  • I am FREAKED OUT excited to be on this path of looking at my finances (I’m doing this 1 year to an organized financial life thing) and recognizing the areas where I have old ideas and fears that need to go in order for me to grow.
  • I am in such appreciation of my friends today. I was not able to be a friend or have a friend for many years. Today, I am lucky to have a life full of people who will love me through it, whatever it is.

Lastly, thank you for the genius who invented the ‘undo’ button, so that the entire 30 minutes I spent writing this post was not wasted by an accidental delete.

When I get to it (to the real), it always feels good.

Happy Monday!