From Dr. Jane's Notebook

Thanksgiving: Deciding to be thankful

Thanksgiving is once again upon us. Traditionally, this is a time when family members gather, spend time together, renew old ties and form new bonds. It is also an important time to be thankful. We can adopt an attitude of thankfulness by reflecting on the past and giving thought to the future. But sometimes, giving thanks is not as easy as it seems.

Thankfulness can lend a sense of balance to life when we most need it. Personally, I am thankful that during the past year, I have attended more weddings than funerals, and I have sent out more New Baby gifts than I have sent out condolence cards. Our lives are constantly changing and unfolding. While we make many of our own choices, we are often reminded that we are never fully in charge of what happens. Along the way, we experience both grief and joy. To maintain a healthy perspective, we must take special notice of the joy!

As we prepare for Thanksgiving this year, consider the many things there are to be thankful for in your life. Recently, a homeless gentleman approached a stranger who was standing in line at a local soup kitchen. He asked the newcomer whether he had any spare change. The newcomer’s eyes fell to the ground as he admitted that it had been a difficult week and he had no money to spare. The homeless gentleman acknowledged the newcomer’s despair and then gently reassured him, "well, at least you are alive".

ęCopyright, 2000, Jane R. Rosen-Grandon. All rights reserved.

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