I’m grateful. I swear I am grateful, but this pressure to suddenly demonstrate it here and on Facebook and Pinterest and Instagram and Twitter is making it feel less genuine for me.
Something about the compulsory nature of the gratitude is rubbing me the wrong way. I am not the only one, thank Heavens, and here’s my favorite post on the gratitude from Carinn at Welcome to the Motherhood.
Man, I am grateful for her and her uncanny gift of keeping the shizz real. (See, that was genuine.)
And I will bow my head today to give thanks for a meal that is graciously served to me (even though I think turkey is generally a boring protein, and pumpkin pie is like 17th on my favorite dessert list, because HELLO? Where’s the chocolate in pumpkin pie?), and I will surrender to the theme of gratitude because my heart actually is full of it. Brimming.
My biggest problem is my healthy, vibrant children don’t sleep late enough for my taste. And sometimes I feel fat and ugly. And my therapist has confused vacation time with working time. And sometimes I hate my hair. Oh– and I am not sure how to make a career as a writer, much less how to finish my novel. Throw in a few days per month of existential malaise and a low-grade fear of people, and that’s the list of my problems.
I may be self-absorbed and immature, but I am not stupid. I know that someone who has the above list as the sum of her life problems has an extraordinary life.
I should have gratitude coursing through my veins, and often I do. But the pressure to package it as clever and pithy and bloggy just makes it feel like a mockery to me. And it makes me feel like a failure because I have seen plenty of extraordinary writing about gratitude. Also, railing against the gratitude “trend” is sort of boorish– after all, as far as trends go, it’s a pretty good one (unlike, say, skinny jeans or huffing glue).
So, I’ll share this with you: I am grateful for my everythings* and for the few boundaries I have between my private life and my public life, which is my way of saying that’s all I’m saying about this now, but check back later, because I may be more forthcoming.
*Not a typo. I meant to say “everythings.” Have you read Room by Emma Donoghue*? I was going for something like the language that her main character used. Did it work? Ok, well, I tried.
*Wanna amp up your gratitude? Read Donoghue’s Room and be grateful you were not born into the situation that she depicts there.