I don’t normally do Thanksgiving, but it is coming up to the first anniversary of when 2011 turned around completely, so I was probably going to write a soppy post anyway.
This time last year I was coming to the end of a fixed-term contract that wasn’t going to be renewed. It was all I could find when I returned up North after my failed attempt at moving down South.
Earlier in 2011 I had left the best job I have ever had and rented out my beloved big house for my new, happy, forever-life by the sea, which lasted all of six weeks.
This time last year I had unsuccesfully applied for absolutely every job going, my housemate had announced she was leaving, I had just been dumped (some things never change) and I was seriously pondering declaring myself homeless.
Then one morning an email flashed on my phone. My old job, the one I loved so much, was vacant again.
I made polite enquiries, ate buckets of humble pie, drank cocktails on a Friday.
Went home knowing I stood an actual chance. The following day I was dragged on stage at the Comedy Store, in front of a paying audience, and afterwards went all Entourage on everybody. That was the start of something good.
The following week I interviewed, apologised, looked at my phone with my heart in my mouth for a day and a half. Then my phone rang, and in the space of a few days I was back in my office, one desk down from where I was sat eight months and three weeks earlier.
I am grateful for the chance I was given after the way I had left, but I am also well aware that my employer isn’t a charity and I am the right person for the job.
Things got going after that; there is so much I am grateful for today and most of it started this time last year.
I am grateful for my life, the job I have and what it allows me to do in my spare time and the people I work with and the beautiful house I live in.
I am grateful for my health and how it survived my attempt at running a marathon and the training that came with it.
I am grateful for music, especially live, because it reaches where nothing else can reach.
I am grateful for my family being healthy.
I am grateful for my friends, who have supported me in this journey and are all a positive influence on my life.
But more importantly, I am grateful because I am not too grateful.
After all that got broken and mended in the past three years I realised that making too much of it was demeaning for me. It focused too much on the past and not enough on the future.
I am not a special case. Stuff happens and I make the best possible decision in the circumstances and deal with the consequences. Life goes on, with a smile.
I am grateful because I have learnt to take risks and make mistakes, and I have worked out a lot of stuff this year and never lost sight of my worth. I am becoming more and more true to myself and whilst it’s not always easy it is definitely the right path for me.
I can look ahead and know I can do this. And for that I give thanks.
And I am also grateful for Twitter.
You might think this sounds ridiculous, but I love the daily interactions with people who know interesting things, or make me laugh, think or both.
Twitter is also a great place to practise my restraint and my efforts at being a nice person. Think before you type, and always be nice to folks. And for that I am grateful.