Self-Gratitude

I had a blog written up and ready for me to post this morning, but it felt long and spoke on my low energy levels and lack of time as of late.  So instead of clicking “publish”, I pressed delete.

That is not to say that those thoughts aren’t valid or that they’re any less meaningful to my process.  I just didn’t feel the blog to be something that needed to be in the public eye.  In my opinion, that’s the whole beauty of writing.  I process my thoughts, ideas and frustrations so that they no longer need to make circles in my mind.  And while all writing is sacred and meaningful, I get to choose which ones I want to share.

Anywho, as I deleted the blog I had to think about why I’m feeling such little life-force lately both physically and emotionally.  And although there are quite a few factors (which I’ll save for another blog), I realized that I haven’t been practicing self-gratitude.

We don’t often remember to fill our souls from the inside out or to recognize our own worth.  I’ve always had an issue around feeling shame or conceit when talking about myself in a positive manner.  So I’ve decided to spend some time focusing on self-gratitude since I so rarely recognize myself and how absolutely incredible I am! I’ve never been one to “toot my own horn”, so this will be a positive exercise for me personally.

I’m going to start with a couple of reasons I’m grateful to be me and I’m not sure yet if it’ll turn into a little series or just be sporadic but I do know that I hope it inspires you to practice gratitude for yourself–because you deserve it too!

Reason #1: I Love My Sense Of Adventure

[I’m on the left in red]

Six years old riding with my step-sister (9), my brother (8) and Dad. I learned to ride when I was 5 or so.

On a swing bridge during our 3-day Abel-Tasman trek in Aotearoa/New Zealand.

Atop Garden of the Gods in Colorado.

Since I was a kid I’ve had a passion for trying new things, thinking outside the box and meeting new people (I would drag my friends around campus in search of finding the “new kids”).  Ever the ‘tomboy’, I was ALWAYS playing with my cousins in the mud, getting dirty, counting my scars (war stories!) and staying in the ocean until my dad pulled me out kicking and screaming.  In my life I enjoy dirtbike riding, spearfishing, hiking, being outdoors and camping… I travelled across the country alone when I was 14 years old (I wanted to see my cousin Keshia in Michigan), went skydiving on my 21st birthday in Aotearoa/New Zealand (because getting drunk is so overrated), was the first person in my family to go to college, and shocked the family by bringing home my haole (white) boyfriend–who turned out to be my husband (nothing wrong with white boys, but I had NEVER brought anyone like him home before that)!

I love that I’m willing to step outside of my comfort zone and try new things. It has allowed me such beautiful opportunities to grow and create.

Reason #2 : I Love How Close I am With My Family

[I’m on the far right] Camping with the typical crew of cousins behind the mountain.

We’d pack the truck up, grab all the kids, and my dad would take us out for at least a week at a time.

A few of the crew –

being grown ups with children of our own now.

Most–if not all–of my childhood memories include my cousins. There are about 25 of us first cousins (my dad is one of 9), and about 10 of us are in the same age group. I can’t imagine life without these incredible people. They taught me so much about life–how to tie my shoe, how to lie, how to get the greatest volume of halloween candy (and then hide your stash without the ants finding it), how to get onto the roof, how to eat dove meat (Dad had a rule that we had to eat everything we killed, so after we shot a bird in the gulch with a BB gun we had to walk all the way in and FIND the bird and then, TADA–Teriyaki dove), etc.

Truth be told, it wasn’t all fun and games–and we went through a lot of trauma together–but it’s made us better and stronger in the end.  Once our Papa passed the family sort of fell apart, but there is something in all of us that will keep us bonded for life.  That sense of family is something that I want to pass on to my children and I cherish the value within myself because I know that it is a privilege that few people experience in their lives.

Our family holiday card last year.  Seriously, how could you not want to be a part of this family??

Aside from my cousins, I’m also really tight with my immediate family.  My brother and I have a very special bond; we’ve been through hell and back together and no one understands me the way he does. I know that being born as his sister was not a mistake–there’s no way I would’ve made it through this life without him.  And Momma and I are incredibly close, too. I went through my rebellion phase (and she let me) where I refused to live with her, talk to her or acknowledge her, but thank goodness that’s over and done.  I’m incredibly grateful for the strength, courage and positivity she’s passed on to me.

Over the years my family has grown in obvious (Ben and his amazing family) and unexpected ways (friends become so close I consider them family).  I consider myself truly fortunate to have such wonderful people in my life that accept me for who I am while also allowing (and encouraging) me to grow.

Ahh, I feel better already :).  Sometimes I just need a quick reminder of all that my life is filled with to keep me grounded.

What are you grateful for? Do you have great, ridiculous photos from the olden days that remind you of your roots?

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One thought on “Self-Gratitude

  1. Therese says:

    You know what? That’s EXACTLY what I needed to read today! 🙂 I’m in the middle of some family issues but reading this post has helped me to be SO incredibly grateful for the rest of my family and how we’ve bonded together during this time. My mother is one of 8 so I hear you on the large family! Although we’re not all close like we were when we were kids I’ve gotten closer to some and it’s been so great to know people who have known you for so long!

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