THANKSGIVING AFTER THOUGHTS
How to Observe Thanksgiving
Count your blessings instead of your crosses;
Count your gains instead of your losses.
Count your joys instead of your woes;
Count your friends instead of your foes.
Count your smiles instead of your tears;
Count your courage instead of your fears.
Count your full years instead of your lean;
Count your kind deeds instead of your mean.
Count your health instead of your wealth;
Count on God instead of yourself.
I considered posting the above poem for Thanksgiving thinking it expressed a positive outlook.
Then the reaction set in and my cynical self wanted to reverse the sentiments as being more realistic. Life is painful not upbeat. The meaning of the poem turned sour before my eyes.
For many people the holidays are not very joyous. The family ones: Thanksgiving, Christmas, Easter are painful reminders of what is lacking in our lives for which we do not have reasons to be thankful. In that light, the above poem is just pollyanna nonsense.
I am one of those who struggle to stay positive about holidays. When I was part of a group or had family around for whom I was responsible to making their holiday fun, it was not difficult.
Now I am alone, it is a battle with myself to not get to negative.
It would be best to tackle this head on and go and volunteer somewhere to help others at these times, but I don't! Each year, I say next year I must do that. I could even host my own gathering and draw together others who are alone to share a meal. By the time, I think of this cynicism has set in. Who wants all those "odds and ends" of people underfoot. It would be better to be alone. You can't make, "a silk purse out of a sows ear" (as the saying goes). You cannot make such a gathering a meaningful one of significant people in your life. The sugnificant people in my life have largely gone and live only in my memory. It is a safe place for them and me. I am not sure I would be comfortable if they came calling . So I visit them in memory and occasionally find them on the Internet.
I guess you have figured it out!! I suffer from periodic depression, which apparently vast numbers of us do. This Thanksgiving I seem to have avoided falling into one. I had a nice meal,
although, in the end, I did not make a squash pie as i promised myself. I shared my meal with my pride of cats and my loyal dog Ben. I also had a couple of lively chats on the Internet. So, all in all, I survived, smiling although far from joyous. Joy is not an emotion I experience even in the best of times. My emotional range is from mellow to dark depression. I envie those who can jump for joy.
The advice in the above poem is intellectually good advice to be positive in one's outlook, (I have handed a lot of that out in my time) but emotionally for me, it is silly pap.(or crap if you prefer!)