Gratitude , The Tall Ships' Races, Szczecin 2007A few weeks ago, I wrote about my project to be more grateful this year. I wanted my life to have MORE Gratitude. So I’ve been trying to keep up with it. I still walk down my hallway, erase yesterday’s message and write a new one. There have been days (this past Monday) when it was hard to be grateful. On Monday, I wrote “Today I’m thankful for Tuesday.” That’s how bad it was. I usually try to blame it on the kids, so I’m sure they had something to do with it, right?

My MORE Gratitude adventure, however, has helped me. It’s made me pause ever so slightly and think about things for which I’m thankful. Some are simple things. Some are important things.  Some are things only I understand. But nevertheless, I try to write down three things I’m thankful for everyday.

A few days ago, though, my son beat me to it.  If I have forgotten to erase yesterday’s list, he often will remind me at breakfast to write what I’m thankful for.  But the other day, he took it a step farther. He fished out the dry erase marker and proceeded to write his own message of thankfulness. And when I peeked out of the kitchen to take a look at what he’d written, my heart melted. There in his little 1st grade handwriting he’d written “mom and dad”.

What makes this all the more sweet is that his thankfulness came on the heels of that really horrible Monday.

Something to know about my little guy is that he’s an encourager. He always knows when I’m down or upset or just tired of being Mom. And when he realizes those things, he often offers me an encouraging word, or a hug and kiss, or a simple gentle pat on my back. And other times he’ll tell me he loves me and that he’s so glad I’m his mommy. After that bad Monday, he knew I needed encouraging, and his thankfulness did just that.

It’s so simple, really, to say thank you to someone or to pause in gratitude for a particular thing or day or moment. But I pass it up so often. A little bit of gratitude can change a person’s day (perhaps even a life). I know it does, because that precious handwriting changed mine.

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