Gratitude / by Christina Rosalie

I have learned this year how to give thanks for small things. For the time between waking and getting up, when Bean looks out the window and I replay fragments of dreams. For the seven sips of coffee with milk and sugar in the morning with the "What's News" section of the Wall Street Journal. For the seconds of laughter that DH and I share each day.

I have learned this year how to gather these little fragments of joy like a handful of bright sea glass pebbles, and hold them close to my heart in the times of confusion and exhaustion. To remember the lighthearted glee of Bean giggling in the bath---hased by my washclothed hand around the tub, in the time when he is whining again, fretting from not enough sleep, or teething pain, or some other unnamed malady. To distill in my mind the sweetness of kissing DH, breath tasting of coffee, before he shuts his door for work, in the time when I my resentment that he can shut his door and go to work wells up in my throat.

I have learned to give thanks for where I am now, instead of wondering where I will be and imagining the gratitude I might feel.

Right now is good.

Here: where the forecast is for snow, the dog scratches at his collar, the heater hums, my husband sleeps on the couch beside me.

Now: in this house with my in-laws, where my father in law makes coleslaw and my mother in law rocks my baby pressed close to her chest for his entire hour long nap.

In this moment: with my hurt knee, and the paperwork still in limbo but almost final for the house (!), and my mother somewhere far away and my sisters somewhere else, and my friends still elsewhere

And for you: the people who I've grown close to through the Internet, scattered all over the world who make me feel sane, and beautiful and funny with your comments.

I am grateful.