I've been tagged (again!). Sheesh...if this continues I may even get voted for Prom Queen one of these days (I'm not holding my breath). This time Dana at Life Turned Upside Down tagged me to tell about 10 things that I am grateful for or that make my life wonderful.
1. Grace and forgiveness, because I need both every single day
2. I'm grateful for my life. Pretty much all of it. There's precious little that I would change, and what I would change would be totally impossible things like having the weather where I live never get hotter than 72 degrees and wearing a size 4 no matter what I eat or if I gave birth to two babies in the past 3 1/2 years.
3. I'm grateful that I eventually met a man that can tolerate me enough to marry me, have two babies with me, and survive 10 married years with me. While I have to say that I do think I am a pretty darn good wife, I'm also not always easy to live with. I even annoy myself on a frequent basis.
4. I'm grateful that Husband and I planned our family and waited to have babies until after college degrees were obtained (including the master's degree I obtained out of boredom while I was waiting for Husband to finish his computer geek degree). AND that we enjoyed 6 1/2 childless married years before all the chaos and nonsense started.
5. My two beautiful wee ones make my life more wonderful than I could have ever dreamed. While I enjoyed those 6 1/2 childless years, I also would never give up what I've got--chaos and nonsense included! My children make me a better person and teach me amazing things everyday. The world is much more fascinating through the eyes of a 3 1/2 year old and a 17 month old.
6. I am grateful to have been somewhat financially established before the wee ones arrived. People say that if you wait until you are financially secure, you will never have children. I disagree with that, although I accept that what was right for us is not necessarily right for everyone. For us, however, it has been wonderful. We were completely debt free (sans mortgage) when our first baby arrived, and we have remained debt free ever since. That has allowed me the freedom to choose if I wanted to maintain a career and how much I wanted to work. It makes the difference between me loving my work or resenting my work.
7. I am grateful for the odd and seemingly random path my life took post-bachelor's degree. Some of the stages were painful, but they ultimately led me down the path of stumbling onto graduate school to become a mental health clinician. I know I would have never found that path without the oddness and randomness of the years that led up to it.
8. I am grateful for the control I have being self-employed. I can work when I want, where I want, and how much I want. And I can quit any time. But I don't want to, because I love what I do. But I love being a mommy to my wee ones even more, so I choose to work around 12 hours per week and be a mommy the rest of the time. I am grateful to be able to arrange it this way, and the combination of the two make my life wonderful.
9. This one may sound strange to some, but I believe my life is wonderful because I've answered the call of God. I suppose there are multiple meanings that can take, but what I originally intended to reference with that statement is my career. I believe everyone has a calling on their life, and to answer it brings huge rewards. My work as a mental health therapist is part of my calling, and it is completely satisfying in a big picture way. Sure it's a real pain in the butt sometimes to work with emotionally troubled people, but when I focus on the bigger picture, I get to come into contact with people's souls, so to speak, on a regular basis. That is a huge (and hugely rewarding) experience! A person is only truly "well" if they are emotionally well. People who are emotionally "well" can be fine if they lose a limb, become blind, or even if they are dying from cancer. But people cannot be fine under any circumstance if they are emotionally sick. In fact, a person who is emotionally "well" has a profound edge in their physical health over those who are not emotionally "well," making emotionally "well" people less likely to be physically ill at all. I know of people who believe there is no value to mental health therapy, but I disagree. I feel what I do is of great value, and I am grateful to have been given the ability to do it.
10. Chocolate. 'Nuff said.
I'm gonna go the simple route and tag whomever would like to post their own list of 10 grateful things or things that make their life wonderful.