I’m sitting here on this gorgeous balcony in Hilton Head, SC where I am staying with my mother and my brother and his family for the holiday. I just suffered a terrible night of stomach flu that my daughter passed on to me just before I left. Because of that I was in bed unusually early last night, waking up early enough that it was still dark outside. Feeling like the worst is over I made myself some tea and decided to watch the sunrise.
This is the first Thanksgiving without Dad. This is also the first Thanksgiving without my grandmother who passed in December last year. On top of all that my girls are not with me this holiday as they are spending it with their own father. It’s a lot to take in as the first of many holidays that aren’t as traditional as they once were.
I think about all of the challenges I have faced recently in my life. There were times I felt they would never end. They were unfair. I would be changed forever and never come out of it. There were times I felt defeated. I focused on the negative more often. What I see now is I hadn’t been paying attention to all of the good things in my life that were still happening. Some of those same challenges were things I am also very grateful for.
It is tough being a single mom, working all the time, trying to squeeze in time for them, for myself and for all the challenges that keep coming my way. But those children teach me kindness and patience. They remind me to still have hope and wonder. They have shown me a kind of love I didn’t know existed. This is good.
That job that gives me stress and anxiety also gives me the means to provide for those children. And come to South Carolina to be with my family. It teaches me a sense of urgency and that there are times you can’t do everything yourself. This is good.
Hardships like lost loved ones and starting over in life have taught me strength and the ability to rebuild with more wisdom this time around. I’ve learned that it is okay to not be okay for awhile. It has taught me that I can make it through anything. Because what I can count on is that the sun will rise again. No matter what is going on in your life, no matter how impossible that hurdle seems in that moment, the sun is going to rise again. And this is good.