Thursday, July 26, 2007

Thankful Thursday

I was browsing the disability web and came across last week and there was a post that caught me. It was called Thankful Thursday and a list followed of things for which thanks was being given. I liked the idea and am borrowing it here today. I'm in a thankful mood and as I'm sitting here with a cup of steaming green tea and a view of a lawn that needs cut, I choose today to be grateful - out loud.

1) I am grateful to live now. Though there is much to be done and many more battles to be fought, I live in a time of cut curbs and a growing sense of enfrancisement within the disability community. There was a time when babies with disabilities were cast down or cast out. There was a time of mass slaughter of those with disabilities, mass sterilization and mass segretation, not long gone but not here now. I am grateful to be here in my home - adapted, to got to work - adapted, to live fully free - adapted.

2) I am grateful for laughter. We spent three hours over lunch on Sunday laughing. Hard. Spitting tea out your nose laughing. Never noticed the others in the room, didn't care about decorum, just laughed freely. What joy. It strikes me that my fondest memories of times at work are times when we jsut laughed. Working with Bob all those years ago, we hurt from laughter - it's what I miss about him most. In fact, that's what I miss about youth, I laughed more then. I vow more laughter in my life.

3) I am grateful for dogs. I miss mine, of course, but I still see bits of Eric bits of Fred in other dogs. Leaving YAI on Friday Bobra and I waited for Joe to pull the car up to get me. We spotted a guy with a dog a few feet away. He brought her over to meet with us. She was a rescue dog, who after talking to him may have rescued him too. She let me pet her. I have always been amazed at how well dogs heads fit in the palms of our hands. She seemed to know that I needed to give her affection so she let me. She gazed up at me with pure contentment as I stroked her fur. New York's noise came to a quiet for a few seconds, a hole was created in time and I was just a little boy with a dog.

4) I am grateful for green tea. A long while back Belinda made reference to a tea PRN and I loved the idea. I knew exactly what she meant. I take my tea seriously and drink cup after cup each day. But I have special tea times. Quiet times when I let tea work it's magic on me. It is then that tea is like a massage for the soul. It lifts and calms. On our way home from New York we stopped at our favourite grocery store in Buffalo to buy groceries. I sat in front of a wall of green tea, it almost seemed like a place to pray. I chose a few new kinds I haven't tried. I can't believe this stuff is legal. I want to be buried with a bag of green tea held in my right hand.

5) I am thankful for being allowed to be in the lives of others. At YAI, training on behavioural approaches, I noticed a big beautiful bright black woman with wild hair and a huge grin. She defined beauty. All though the day, she was a step ahead of me. She outpaced me. She grew faster than the material I presented. At the end of the day I called her over and asked her if she knew how bright she was, if she understood her own talent. I encouraged her to follow that talent, and I could tell by the light that went on in her eyes, that she would remember this day. I got to do that, give that to her, how great is that?

So there are a few things I'm thankful for, I'm also thankful for the idea for this post so please pop over and visit pipecleanerdreams. But if you've a mind, tell me what you're grateful for, leave your address in the responses and we'll all pop over for a visit.


wendy said...

I am grateful every single day for the love in my life. The love of my partner, my friends, my pets...all different sorts of love and all as sustaining as food and water and air. It seems unreasonably lucky to love and be loved.
I am grateful for every person who went before me who fought fights that make my life less difficult.
I am grateful for the time and place of my birth...back to "less difficult"! blog address to send anyone to so here's my list. Thanks Dave!

Anonymous said...

I don't have a blog either. I am grateful for many, many things. The biggest one probably being the first one on your list, Dave. I am grateful that because of the time I live in, I wasn't told to send my daughter away to an institution, that it would be best for her to be locked away. Things are not easy for her, but at least she gets to grow up at home with a family that loves her.
When I was going through an extremely difficult time in my life, I found a support group of people who were going through a similar struggle. One very wise man that I met there used to say something that has become my motto in life and that I try to pass on to as many people as possible, especially my children. Quite simply, "Gratitude is the secret to happiness".

Jodi said...

Sacrilege...I don't like tea, green or otherwise. I do like the other things on your list. I'm thankful that my son was born during a time when he was able to have his heart (and other body parts)repaired. Not only that the doctors "could" repair them, but that they "would" repair them.

I am also thankful for laughter. It's one of the things that saves my sanity!

I am thankful for sunshine, beautiful flowers, and the sound of birds.

Unknown said...

I am thankful for the touch of my children: My little boy (5) who leans against me or climbs up in my lap for warmth, for love, for comfort; and my now-giant 17-year-old son whose long arms wrap me in a bear-hug when he's too happy to speak and he loses his words.
I am thankful for the love of my life, my darling Paul, who loves me unconditionally and supports me in everything I do. He is my rock in life's raging river, to whom I happily cling.
I am thankful for empathy, both my ability to put myself into others shoes and heads, and other people's ability to "get" me. Too many people along the way have labelled me "weird", so it's delightful to be understood and accepted.
I am thankful for my job, which allows me to teach and to learn every minute of every day. When I was in school, I had no idea that such a job existed. If it didn't, I would have had to make it up, it fits me so perfectly.
I am thankful for a yard full of overgrown trees, where I romp with my boys.
I am thankful for the understanding and compassion of people, who have let my autistic boy grow up with a strong sense of self-worth, the freedom to choose his own path, and the support to walk along it.
I am thankful for your blog, Dave, which I read every day, which inspires and moves me, makes me laugh and cry, and feel.
I don't have a blog either, so thanks for letting me borrow yours for a moment.

Jenny said...

After I comment here, I will make my post. Feel free to check it out. :)

Ashley's Mom said...

Dave, I am thankful that you included a reference to my blog in your post, and that in some small way I could contribute to the reflections of your readers.

Ashley's Mom at

Anonymous said...

im thankful for the opportunities God gives me, my job and the people I meet everyday, and the people around me that help me grow each day!
thanks Dave!
johanna v.

Stephanie said...

Ironic. I posted a couple of days ago on my blog that I just felt the need to be thankful out loud.
It has been almost a year since our home burnt to the ground. A total loss.
Yes, we were home.
It was the middle of the night. My husband and I awoke to the sound of the glass popping out in the kitchen. We gathered the children and ran out the door. The fire literally kissed our hineys out the door. We stood across the street and watched everything we had built over the last 7 years go up in flames. The only thing that survived the fire was my bible. It was singed around the edges, but still useable.
Yes, we had insurance. However it wasn't enough to cover the loss.

Here's where my thanks comes in.
Because of the generosity of family, friends, neighbors and complete strangers we were able to get a home and it was filled with all that we needed. People gave us money, furniture, dishes, clothing, toys, school supplies, appliances (fridge, oven, w/d), electronics. The list goes on. It was overwhelming and truly restored our faith in humankind.
I am thankful for my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. He is the ultimate protector and provider. It is because of Him that my family is here today.
I am thankful for Dave. Your words touch me and move me. You make me laugh, cry, think. You are a blessing.
Here is my blog, it is a way that my girlfriends and I keep in touch with each other. I am afraid it is not awe inspiring, just a bit of me on a daily basis.
Bless all of you!

Sally said...

I am grateful for the crip blogging community. For everyone I 'meet' through blogging. For their shared experiences, which let me know that; it isn't just me, it happens to others; and we can fight what is wrong; and also to hand the baton on, to other crip bloggers who are just beginning to be able to fight the good fight.
And for the funny stores too; laughing out loud at something I read !