How was everyone’s Thanksgiving? Everyone still alive? Everyone already forgotten about it as we enter the Christmas “rush”? My holiday turned out to be a true delight as my in-laws and parents feasted the night away with a list of dinner conversation starters, a pile of party games, and my fabulous contribution of pumpkin mac ‘n cheese.

I got pretty busy the week of Thanksgiving and didn’t have a chance to pause and reflect on all my blessings until this week. Even though I usually rattle off the typical gratitude list of “Family, Friends, Husband, Health, Safety, etc.,” I started to make a more detailed mental record this week as I was griping about my long commute and stack of finals homework. I’ve written before about some of the challenges of going back to graduate school: limited health insurance, decrease in professional status, delaying buying a house, lack of income to save for retirement, high cognitive load, constant deadlines and evaluations and so on. It keeps coming. There are good parts too, like holiday breaks and discounted theater tickets, but I still struggle with discouragement when I watch my friends get promotions and raise children while I’m up late writing papers.

I’ve still had a personally good year, though, even though there has been so much sadness in the world and in the lives of people I love. I’ve been to church and to the gym and out to concerts and even to some movies. So much has gone wrong this year, but also so much has gone right. So in the spirit of the holiday season, I’m making a list of all some of the things I’ve appreciated throughout the year.  Enjoy.

My Grown-Up Thanksgiving List

My sister moving to Indianapolis this summer
My personal trainer who meets with me at a different time each week depending on my schedule
My mom who takes me out to lunch and bakes me cookies
My friend, Marie, who went to the gym with me for 15 weeks in a row
My trip to Iceland
My sunset tour of Fallingwater
My husband’s several months of relaxed rotations
My shopping trip and new clothes from my mother-in-law
My dependable Mazda with 0 trips for repairs
My landlord who sends quick responses to our multiple repair needs
My piano keyboard that has provided me with stress relief
My friend, Jess, who lets me borrow her art museum membership when she’s out of town
My decreased number of speeding and parking tickets (only 1 this year!)
My husband’s ability to cook a warm dinner for me when I get home late
My assigned externship site located on the way to school
My podcast queue
My free food I receive through blogging
My classmates who drive to Indy to visit me
My friends who keep up long-distance relationships
My neighbor who let me borrow her folding chairs
My nearby public library
My weekends without a commute
My new favorite TV shows (shout-out to Outlander!)
My body that can lift weights and climb sand dunes
My increased volunteering and community service
My church and new relationships with people who attend it
My blog readers
My husband who doesn’t question when I purchase a winter’s supply of wine from Martha Stewart’s wine club (it was a great sale!)
My cyber Monday deals (I mostly bought stuff for me, but hey, now I have sale candles!)
My month of unlimited December yoga at my neighborhood studio
My brain at its new heights of personal intellectual capacity

And more. What are you thankful for?

Lindsay Sig

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