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THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

I had paragraphs written for today's Thankful Friday and as I read through it all, I thought to myself "that doesn't sound very grateful." What is my intention behind this whole gratitude thing on Fridays any way?  Some times it becomes a list, but I've noticed that some times it becomes a complaint. This sucks and I'm thankful that it's over, almost over, fixed or what ever kind of complaint. I am being grateful for complaining. That's gross. 

I feel change in the air. I'm ready to set my New Year's resolutions before this year has even ended. I see a reinvention of a sorts, a girl who wears a bunch of beaded bracelets on one wrist and has a lotus tattoo on the other wrist (I had a clear vision of a lotus wrapping it's petals around my wrist). I see myself pairing down all of my things and truly getting myself organized. But most importantly, I see a girl with genuine gratitude for the life she has. I feel I've maybe been lacking genuine lately.

This week I made a mistake with the bills that left us in a hole on our checking account. I was able to transfer funds from savings to bail us out of the hole and there was no damage other than my guilt of having to take money from savings. I can clearly remember a time when there wouldn't have been money in savings to cover overdrafts in my checking. I also know that there are so many people out there who don't have a savings account to cover overdrafts in their checking. I am very aware that there are those who must choose between a loaf of bread or paying the electric bill. I am not grateful that I am not that person, because I've been that person. I can be grateful that I am in a place where I can actually have a savings account even if it is a small one. I can also be grateful for the reminder to be a more responsible spender so when the opportunity arises, I can help out that person who needs a loaf of bread.

Some times it is a good idea to step back and look at our words from a different angle. Usually I will ask myself "what am I doing right now?" as way to pull my focus to this present moment. It's a mindfulness tool. Perhaps I need to consider the same kind of questioning for Thankful Friday entries. What am I truly grateful for this week? The answer to that question may result in a list at times, but it should never result in a complaint. The point of all of this is to be mindful of blessings that I have. It is a reminder for those days I wake up wanting to punch someone that I should be grateful to have the ability to get up (and punch someone if need be). Bad days are bad days. I'm not trying to sugar coat them or be all "at least I'm not that guy." What I can do is recognize the bad day with something that wasn't so bad. Sometimes I need a kick in the pants to remind me to do just that. 

I am grateful for new babies (Sarah brought her new one to work the other day and I got to hold her for almost an hour). I am grateful for the Gong Lab I signed us up for tonight. I am thankful for some pretty good things happening for friends I love dear. I am genuinely thankful for each and every kind word from you. Here's to a weekend of cleaning and Thanksgiving preparations and a very Thankful Friday.

THANKFUL FRIDAY

Cindy Maddera

This has been a serious week. I am almost tempted to just leave it at that. Heavy is a good word to describe it. I've spent many hours searching the internet for reliable, credible, statistics on race and crime and statistics versus what we see on the TV. You know me. I'm always looking for the facts and details to a story. Never take anything for face value. Question everything. Things were better last night in Ferguson. But I'm selfish. I want more than better and I want to see these events spark some major change. For now I will be grateful for first night in almost a week that the people of Ferguson had a relatively peaceful night. 

And enough with the heavy. Today is a day to be thankful. Michael had parent/teacher meetings last night. I came home to an empty house so I did something I haven't done in over a year. I peed with the bathroom door open. I also took advantage of my alone time by cleaning the house. I know exactly what some of you are thinking. Cleaning is my thing. Yes, I could have slathered my face in some crazy green deep pore cleansing mask and lounged on the couch watching Sex in the City with a box of Thin Mints. I'm out of Thin Mints, so I scrubbed the house instead. Kitchen counter tops, window ledges, baseboards were wiped clean. Tiny spiders were smashed and cobwebs removed from corners. I mopped the floors and when I dropped the bottle of Pine Sol and spilled half of it on the kitchen floor, so I mopped again. I had just put the mop away and sprawled out on the couch when Michael came home. He walked in and looked around and said "Did you mop?" like it was the craziest thing for me to do.

There is a satisfaction in clean floors. The house in general tends be straight. Clutter in is dealt with on a weekly basis, but there has been an underlying layer of dirt that I have been ignoring, or avoiding, or just too busy to deal with. I've only been able to handle the superficial. It was time to remove the hidden layer of grime. I'm not just cleaning the corners of rooms. I'm cleaning out the corners of my soul. I am thankful to be heading into this weekend with a clean house. I am thankful for how much lighter I feel from cleaning the house. 

I am thankful for the five trays of tomatoes I roasted on Sunday and the fresh corn and black-eyed peas I put up. Many of you have sent lovely cards. I am so thankful for your kind words. I received a beautiful seaside sunset from Suebob yesterday. Every time I look at it I think "I want to go to there". I may have to frame it. I also received a thank you letter from the KC AIDS Walk for my participation in this year's walk. It made me smile. And guess what? I am thankful for you.

The best of weekends to you and a light Thankful Friday. 

 

THANKFUL FRIDAYS

Cindy Maddera

It's been really hard lately to not just be thankful that it's Friday. The weather changed topped off with the sun setting earlier and earlier has made my body start to crave sleep. I feel like I have bribed myself out of bed every morning this week with promises of naps when I get home and sleeping in on Saturday. If I can just make it to Friday has become the new mantra. But it has never been the intention of Friday's post to praise the upcoming weekend. While I am thankful for the promise of some extra sleep, I am even more thankful for the simple act of getting out of bed everyday. I am thankful for the walks I take every day with my friends at work. I am thankful for the hot rice cereal I eat for breakfast every morning and the strawberries and bananas that I top it with. I am thankful for those moments when I don't have to worry about making dinner when I get home form a long day. I am thankful for the people in my life who, through a simple act, can help me make it through a day. I am thankful for my sense of humor.

The routine is very important to me, but it's easy to get stuck in the loop of work, teach, eat, sleep. It's easy to forget to pay attention to the things that happen in between all of that. And that is the true intention of Friday's entries. Have a wonderful weekend and a very thankful Friday.

THANKFUL FRIDAYS

Cindy Maddera

Do you hear that? No? That's the sound of me breathing through both sides of my nose. Finally, after two weeks this crud seems to be breaking up and moving on out. The cough still lingers, but that seems to be the thing with coughs. I am thankful to finally be feeling well. Stars have collided in the past few months and I have not been able to get down to Norman for a yoga class. I am thankful that Saturday is free and open and that I feel well enough to attend a class. Since the weekend seems to be so obligation free, I am also thinking about making cheese. We'll see. I've been sending out my CV to various places over the last few weeks. There's no news yet on anything other then one email of "thanks but no thanks, you live to far away to consider". I remember the last time I went through the job search exercise. I would send my CV out and hear nothing. NOTHING. This time around, I've received some sort of notice stating that they are currently reviewing all the applications and they'll let you know one way or the other about the job. I am so thankful for these emails. It takes a lot of the guess work out of the process and they've been helpful in letting me know when and if I should apply elsewhere.

What else? I am thankful to be here, right now, in this moment. Have a wonderful weekend!

THANKFUL FRIDAYS

Cindy Maddera

I had written this whole paragraph of blah and then I deleted it all. It was about how the week dragged on and blerg and blah and more blah and I just felt myself slipping into old cranky habits. So I deleted it. All things should be this easy. Bad day? Delete it. Shoes rubbed a blister and you put a whole in your favorite pair of pants? Delete it. I am thankful that each day I get is a chance to delete the previous crappy day. I am thankful for the usual stuff today. It's Friday. I have a great husband, an awesome dog (I just taught him the down command and falls down like he's been shot-Love it!), and a great supportive family. I am thankful for the donations I've already received for the AIDS walk (you can still give). You guys are awesome! This weekend we plan on surrounding ourselves with great supportive friends. All is good. I did not watch TV with my cereal this morning and even NPR got moved over to the local oldies station and John Lennon was singing this. I don't think it could have been any more appropriate.

Have a great weekend.