Of course not!
It truly sucked.
That’s the truth of it.
And that’s the lesson and gift of it, too.
Zac the Dog flew away to dance in the heavens on Sunday during a big teaching weekend for me.
Of course. Of course, I would be teaching, the worker bee that I am.
Then I got a massive cold.
Of course I did.
I toughed it out, working till the holiday.
By Thursday I was bed-ridden, plans cancelled, remote control bungeed to my dominant hand, sleeping and weeping and flicking Netflix options, rooting for and wildly changing allegiance for different candidates on the Great British Baking Show and waking up on a pile of dirty tissues, knowing everybody in the world was cuddling with their canines and their lovers and assuring myself I would never again smile, get out of bed, or even consider putting the remote control down.
It got bleak. Then it got bleaker yet.
You gotta know, I am generally and constitutionally somewhat positive. A nice-Jewish-girl-in-college-hippy-child-of-the-sixties, I have a solid buoyant-ness that has served me.
My buoyancy got up and bounced on without me on Thanksgiving.
(Except for my dark, morose side, which I just remembered! In high school, I penned this poem on my binder: I fall upon the thorns of life…..I bleed!
Back to Thanksgiving—
Midday I struggled out of bed, a cough drop wrapper literally stuck to my cheek, finding my sea legs, gingerly made my way downstairs.
Miracle of miracles, I started reaching out to friends, via text and email.
Miracle of miracles, I started reading the emails I got back.
Miracle of miracles, I started writing.
Miracle of miracles, my landlady brought me chicken soup.
Miracle of miracles, I changed my pajamas.
Miracle of miracles, my self-pity melted into grief.
Miracle of miracles, I felt shitty and so much better.
I felt heartbroken but not victimized.
I felt untethered but not self-doubting.
I felt alone but not deserted.
I felt physically ill but not the horrible-imagined—a-fatality-disease-of-fantasy-land-what’s-going-to-happen.
And—what a miracle, in the midst of a sinus headache bigger than Berkshire County, a running nose unstoppable in its liquid mission—a wave of quiet gratitude sweep over me.
Gratitude for what, I wondered?
Here’s my list.
- I am grateful for— life exactly as it is
- I am grateful for—my dearest and most extraordinary canine companion, Zac Joe Doodle and all he offers me (present tense intentional)
- I am grateful for—my willingness to live sober and not dash to the line at Theory Wellness, the fancy cannabis store, a stone’s throw from the pile of tissues clogging my bathrobe pocket
- I am grateful for—my capacity, no matter what I’m feeling, to open the blank page of my computer and face myself
- I am grateful for— each one of you, because without you, I would not be facing myself, I would not be writing as I am
- I am grateful for—for every single moment of my marriage
- I am grateful for—for every single moment of my love affair
- I am grateful for—every Christmas tree looking at me from the Christmas tree farm across the road
- I am grateful for— this moment, as it is.
I realized that snotty, sneezy afternoon that gratitude does not rely on upon feelings, that I could feel uber-crappy and still be profoundly grateful.
I never had that experience before!
A Thanksgiving miracle?
Sans pumpkin pie?
Please check out this four-minute video:
How did I even find this video? It found me. A Love Song to the World by Empty Hands Music is part of an international movement to share uplifting songs for life, love, and expansion.
Not a bad idea!
Not a bad practice.
Gratitude in the midst of real-life……..
Give me the courage,
And the strength
To focus on
Thanks, dear friends, for the outpouring of love and response you had to Zac’s blog. Your words are so kind, so comforting. I will keep them forever in my heart.
I think Zac might have shattered some record for the volume of response to an on-line-canine-written-blog!
Word has it, He is right here, loving us and taking care of us.
I choose to believe that.
To a day of gratitude, no matter what we are feeling.