Today I wanted to relay a few of the things for which I’m thankful. There are many more people and things for which I could give thanks, and do daily, but here I’ll just touch on a few of them.
1. Jim. I am so thankful for a husband who loves and supports me, cares for me, doesn’t take any crap from me but still holds me when I’m crying, provides for us, encourages open lines of communication, is my exact opposite in so many ways that he balances me out, helps calm me when I’m wound up or upset, understands what I’m trying to say when I just can’t find the words, wants to be married to me – doesn’t just stay because he has to or because he’s been made to think he has to, wanted to procreate with me and thinks I’m beautiful when I’m in day-old makeup or none at all and his sweats.
2. This beautiful baby. We got pregnant really easily, which was a blessing in and of itself, and I know that not every couple is so lucky. I am so thankful for this little girl. I wanted a boy so badly until the ultrasound tech told us it was a girl. Now I just can’t wait to meet her, hold her, hug her, kiss her, help her through life, teach her to be independent, encourage her and see her into adulthood, as much as all of that letting go stuff makes me well up with tears. She’s going to be the perfect addition to our family, and I am so blessed to be carrying her and so thankful for her.
3. My family. This includes my in-laws and other extended family. I have a father who never ceases to amaze me with his love and strength, a mother whose happiness and craziness is contagious in a very good way, a step-father who makes my mother happier than I’ve ever seen her in my life, and four incredible siblings who make being 8,000 miles away really difficult because they are so very much a part of me. In addition I have in-laws who love us and are excited to see us succeed, grandparents who give without taking, and so many other family members to love and appreciate that it would take a 25-page blog to list them all, and I’d still probably forget someone.
4. My friends. I have very few close friends, and I like it that way. I have been burned by more friends than I can even remember, and the hurt that I’ve had in my life because of that is sometimes overwhelming. But I’m so thankful that I have friends here I can count on, people who hug me, people who listen when I need an ear, people who respectfully disagree with me instead of just putting me down for my opinions, people I can count on, people who I know will be here for me, and people who I think will be a part of my life for a very long time. Even those friends who have already left Japan, I know that I could catch back up with in a heartbeat and still have their love and support.
5. My cat. I know this might seem silly to some, and that I’m the first one to say that I am not a cat person, but Sakana is just wonderful. She’s so sweet, and so crazy, and I’m so thankful that we found her.
6. A home. God truly blessed us by giving us the ability to have a nice, comfortable home in a place so far away from familiar. Even with the noisy upstairs neighbor, the neighbor who smokes on their patio and the wind blows it right into our living room, the dirty, inconsiderate neighbors that leave trash and other messes in the elevator, the lobby and the stairs to the parking lot, I like our little apartment, and it’s been good for us. Love grows best in little houses, right? Well, this one is small and cramped and sometimes it feels like the walls are closing in, but it’s home.
7. Material items. I know this might make me seem very of the world, but we have been so blessed to have everything that we need and the grand majority of the things we want. God has blessed us financially, and blessed us with the ability to manage our finances and control and eliminate our debts in a way that allows us certain luxuries. It’s not like we have brand new stuff all the time or the best of everything, but we do have what we want and beyond everything that we need. We were able to purchase the things we needed for our baby and were blessed with many gifts from friends and family. We don’t want for much, besides extravagant items that we just can’t justify (and probably wouldn’t want to). I am so thankful that we are in this position.
There are so many other people and things for which I am thankful that I could list, but I’ll stop here. Above all, God has blessed us so much and so well that I can only thank Him for everything that we’ve been given. Life is good for our family, and my hope is that wherever life leads us next, we will be able to continue to find happiness, joy and to recognize the blessings in our lives.