Traci has been so supportive of *the gratitude project: dare to be grateful* and our conversations over the past year hinted at a deeply felt gratitude of her own. And so, when I invited her to share that gratitude in this space, she enthusiastically agreed.
I feel blessed to have her in my life. Wish you lived closer, my friend...
What Personal Quality Are You Most Grateful For and Why?In some ways, I’ve been a late bloomer my whole life. It’s not something I’ve ever taken much note of, except in grade 8 when I got teased for still climbing trees and not wearing makeup. Hey… I had multiple flavours of “Lip Smackers” on the go (Mom said clear lip gloss only) and I still climb trees. I just no longer care if people find it strange. The joy of sitting in a tree far outweighs the opinions of others.
I also think I’ve been slow to fully acknowledge my true strengths. As I looked at what qualities I appreciate about myself, I became grateful for the exercise of answering this question.I discovered I’m grateful for:
my courage: I was repeatedly tossed into some very dark places for over a decade and despite fears that I’d lost myself at times, in the end, I emerged stronger than ever – with deep gratitude for the family and friends who stood by memy playfulness: I love to play, to laugh, to explore, create, adventure, be silly, go on all the rides, try new things and a beautiful carousel will make me cry. I’m grateful for the people in my life who love the kid in me and join me in play.
my determination: I don’t give up easily. I possess a tenacity of mind/heart over matter for which I owe great gratitude to the teachers and mentors who I trained with spiritually, in meditation/communication practice.my love: I love my family, friends and pets deeply and fiercely with an “I’ve got your back” type of honour. I am so grateful to my beautiful parents for teaching me this type of love and demonstrating it so very well.
my optimism: I’ve been affectionately teased my whole life about my rose-coloured glasses, my silver lining, my boundless, eternal optimism. My Mom says I was just born like that and my nephew is the same. I am beyond grateful for this quality. In itself, it has been the silver lining during the darkest of days.But then… as I wound my way through these grateful moments trying to pick one, I realized that, most of all, I’m grateful for the way that I’ve grown - to be willing to openly share what I like about me. To share just as it is, without fear about the opinions of others and the societal need to place people in an appropriate box. I don’t fit in a box… and I’m happy with the awkward, wandering parts that make it so.
Though this path to acceptance of self has been lit by a lifetime of experiences, wonderful friends and family I must share that it was greatly accelerated when I met the love of my life, 5 years ago. Late bloomer, remember? He sees me for who I am. He sees me in ways that surprise me sometimes. Being loved and celebrated by him at my best and at my worst has been a true catalyst that allows me to more safely step forward into fully being who I am.
Gratitude overload reached… signing off now.