There are evergreen things I give thanks for all the time, like my health, access to clean water and food, a loving partner, a caring family (even if we get on each other's nerves sometimes!!), great weather, and nourishing friendships.
But then there are things exclusive to the year. And, oh, how special 2020 has been...
1. Lockdown was bearable in WA
There's talk of a second wave coming to Western Australia next year, but that doesn't stop me feeling grateful for how bearable our first wave's lockdown was, compared to many other places in the world. We could have had it a lot worse.
2. Getting more opportunities to learn and talk about important issues
I don't like the circumstances leading up to the BLM eruption earlier this year, but the worldwide protest and visibility has made it so much easier to have difficult conversations about injustice, oppression, race, misunderstandings and misgivings. At least in my social bubbles, there's common ground now for learning together and educating each other. I'm very thankful for that.
3. Releasing two books!
For a while, I worried that I wouldn't achieve anything this year, only to find that looking at writing as a matter of "achievement" is what would hold me back. Switching to a "just learning and having fun" mindset got me back on track with my writing, and got both "The Guy From The Flower Shop" and "The Guy From The Internet" out into the world.
4. Finding a good physiotherapy studio
Sometimes you don't know you're missing something until you stumble upon it. The studio I'm at now has such a welcoming vibe about it, the staff are so friendly, and there's a positive atmosphere. I don't want to blame the old place I was at, because they do help a lot of people. But I was hoping for a more wellness-focused vibe, which this new place seems to have plenty of. Lesson learned: never be afraid to shop around! What a lucky find. I'm thankful there are places like this, and hopeful that they stay this way for the long term!
5. The option to switch off
I don't take this for granted at all, especially knowing that not everybody gets the choice to do this. And I think it's important to make the distinction between feeling guilty for what you have (definitely don't feel guilty!) and showing gratitude by appreciating what you have and trying to help lift others up. Everyone deserves a break and a fairer life. Everyone.
To all of you who celebrate at this time of year, have the happiest of happy Thanksgivings 🧡