Tuesday, May 3, 2016


I've decided gratitude is the greatest bedfellow.

My love affair with gratitude started about a year ago, when a friend suggested I read a book called, "The Magic" (you should read it too). The book lays out different ways of actively being grateful in your day to day life. For awhile, I consistently practiced those methods and noticed huge returns on my investment.

Somewhere along the way, I stopped. I stopped writing down 10 things a day I was grateful for. I started getting out of bed before counting my blessings. I stopped saying "thank you" seven times in a row when I was unhappy.

But I never stopped feeling grateful.

I carried gratitude in my heart. I said silent prayers of thanks. I smiled all the time. I tried to treat others with kindness and compassion. I gave generously of my money and time.

And gratitude didn't go anywhere. It didn't say you aren't paying enough attention to me so I am leaving. It didn't beg for praises. It just patiently waited for my return.

I woke up this morning and before even opening my eyes, I started practicing active gratitude. I heard the birds chirping and felt the sun warm my face. I started saying "thank you" for everything I touched. My sheets, my blankets, my pillows. My pets, my bed, my floor. My pajamas, my hair, my eyes. I thought of all I had to look forward to today. I felt so incredibly lucky and blessed.

I've carried that feeling throughout the day. As I visited our local orphanage and met their newest child - a 7 year old girl who was abandoned on a city bus. She had never been to school. I got to help teach her how to write the letter "A" and even try the letter "B". Thanks to the gratitude I carried with me, I was able to focus on this child's (now bright) future. I was tempted to feel anger at her biological parents. I wanted to scream at her mother and slap her father silly. It's easy to judge and wonder why or how anyone could do such a thing to their child.

But I choose to be grateful that she is now part of a fantastic children's home, where she will have a family that will never leave her.

I'm grateful that she is just a couple years behind in school. I am grateful her tiny body will grow with good nutrition. I'm grateful she won't be faced with the choice of selling her body or eating.

I am grateful that in just a few short days, a child who lost their entire life and everything they have ever known, can laugh and smile again.

I choose to focus on the good, knowing that will bring about more good.

I hope you'll join me.


an Addison alien

who, to be perfectly honest, still wants to punch somebody. Because no one should hurt kids. Ever. 

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