So today I am 45 years old. So much has changed. My kids are grown up and moved out. I have a 2nd career, Master's Degree and professional Marriage and Family Therapist Licenses in 2 states!
I have had many challenges in my life and many blessings. I would like to start out this new year on the right foot so I am going to count 45 of my blessings - in no particular order.
1. I am alive.
2. I have pretty good health!
3. I had an amazing electrocardiogram of my heart that showed it is very healthy!
4. My lab tests are getting closer to normal.
5. I am walking more and can walk more than 10 miles in a day.
6. My life is getting calmer and I am learning to enjoy the challenges.
7. Bipolar - yup it is a blessing - without the ability to live on nearly no sleep - I would not have made it through my Master's program.
8. My daughter - she challenged me to better myself and be the best person I could be. This also put me on the path to being a therapist.
9. Being a therapist. I am so blessed to work with clients and to finally have a passion for what I do.
10. My son - he has taught me so much! He is amazing and watching him become a man really inspires me. Most of all he taught me to not think I have to stick to whatever "normal" is but to celebrate uniqueness.
11. My mom - I am so blessed that I still have my mom. Many of my friend's no longer have their parents. I am also blessed to have her support.
12. My dad - aka Nik. Our start was a rocky one, but he has always been there for me and as a parent, I realize how important that is.
13. My 1st husband, Mathew - This year especially it has been a blessing to have him in my life. We almost lost him and that scared me. I am so glad after 28 years we still have our solid friendship.
14. My current husband - 8 years of marriage and 10 years together - he has been my main support, he stayed in my crazy drama filled life even when he didn't have to. I am so blessed we found each other when we did.
15. My dad - aka Dave - I am blessed that we seem to have found a common ground to improve our relationship.
16. Being a Priestess. I was blessed to find my path as a Priestess and it seems although crazy and challenging, that once I found that path - things seemed to flow better. I feel more at one with the earth and universe and found my calling.
17. My priestess sisters - It is so wonderful to have my priestess sisters, being there. We can be open and honest. We can fight and then let it go. We rely on each other and I am a better person because I have them in my life.
18. I have a roof over my head. 15 years ago, I would have never thought that would have been something I would worry about. But getting to that point after having so much, seeing how quick things can fall apart, makes me realize how important the simple things are.
19. Beaker - our Senegal Parrot. I never thought I would feel blessed about having a dang bird but I do. She keeps me company, and makes me laugh and is like a perpetual 3 year old. Amusing and annoying all in one - but makes me feel less lonely and days I am depressed.
20. My hairdresser Scott. I know that may sound shallow, but I have hated my thinning hair that has bald spots my whole life. Then I went in and told this guy I wanted lavender hair streaked with my grey, and he told me not with my hair and then listened to what I wanted and figured out how to do the closest thing to it. I love my hair and that is a first for me! And to think if he did what I asked him to, I would have had no hair left.
21. My son's best friend's family. I cannot imagine how my life in Sacramento would have gone had my son not gotten his best friend and had such support from the family. Even getting a call in the middle of the night to pick up my son, they did and took care of him.
22. My son's girlfriend. My son is very special to me, and also an old soul. He never has handled girl drama well, so it was wonderful to meet such a special woman, who is not filled with drama. Also I appreciate how much she appreciates and loves him. I will never forget seeing her put maybe 50 sticky notes on the bathroom mirror with different reasons she loves him - for him to see when he woke up.
23. My friends - I am not a party type person, nor do I have hundreds of friends. The friends I have are select and wonderful. They would give you the shirt of their backs if you needed it. I am blessed to have them in my life.
24. My sister, Sonya. We have lived life at a distance most of the time, but she has always been nice to me (some sisters especial step-sisters are known to be mean or rude especially to younger sisters - but she never was). Her art is amazing and always seems so deep. She never told me I should be different or change myself, we actually didn't speak much when I was growing up, but she let me quietly sit watching her draw or paint which I appreciated. As I realized we had more in common it was nice to know someone like me.
25. My Grandpa Jake - he is no longer around - but he never seemed to treat me differently than my brother. He taught me to drive (a stick!). He taught me how to chop wood, whittle, wood working, and just about anything else he needed to do. I was blessed to never feel like a girl couldn't do things.
26. My Grandma Phyllis - she is no longer around either but boy did I learn so much from her. Many of my creative ideas come from her and knowing just which container left overs will fit in is something I appreciated her trying to teach me. Amusing too, was that she always thought I was a witch (the good kind) and seemed to control the weather and knew things. I also will always remember my grandma learning HTML coding in her late 70s.
27. Privilege - I am blessed with a lot of privilege - I am white, not obviously handicapped, no perceived to be a minority. My mom owned a home and while times were often very tough - I had more than many of my peers. My mom is also college educated and made sure we had what we needed for school. I try to use this blessing to help others who are not as privileged.
28. My office-mate, Gabby. I still cannot believe how blessed I was, I desperately needed a supervisor and I would have taken pretty much anyone, and I met her because she met my friend at a training. I walked into her office and we connected. She has spent her entire professional career (a very long one since she is 77 now) working with traumatized kids, exactly the population I work with. After I got my license, she allows me to rent her other office by the hour so I don't have too much overhead. We are able to consult with each other and we are amazing friends.
29. My 22 year old forest green ford windstar minivan still runs and can haul anything I need to move.
30. My extended family. On my my mother's and my father's side, I have amazing family. I am so blessed that we don't have huge family rifts and we keep in touch (facebook sure helps).
31. My magnetic-velcro bras that my mom does. I cannot tell you how wonderful it was to be able to have a bra I can put on by myself. I am blessed that my mom and I could come up with a way to modify my bras. It gave me my independence back.
32. I have been blessed to go through many challenges that allowed me to become a better person and have empathy for others going through challenges.
33. Blessed to have finally found a doctor that works WITH me. AND he also stayed with Sutter after he completed his residency so I could keep seeing him.
34. Blessed to got to Alaska TWICE! So beautiful and Amazing!
35. That I do not get sea sick and neither does my hubby - we LOVE the ocean and even being on small boats.
36. That we have the ability to take vacations and do not live paycheck to paycheck right now. It is really a blessing after living where that was not the case.
37. We live in a country that is not war torn. Where we live, we can drive to and from work without worrying about mines, and planes dropping bombs. So many of the people I work with have come from parts of the world, where going to school is just not safe.
38. We are blessed with enough to help others.
39. My husband being able to work and having a steady job (hoping that blessing continues)
40. Blessed that our weather is pretty mild where we live.
41. Blessed that my son has a wonderful and safe place to live.
42. Blessed to have wonderful landlords who are quick to respond when we need something but do not try to micromanage.
43. I am blessed to have a naturally curious personality that keep makes me wanting to learn more.
44. Blessed to have found a true and deep love with my hubby.
45. Blessed to have had every experience and person that has come into my life.