I’m Thankful for that S***

river_1So my childhood was not what you’d exactly call “ideal”. Divorce, Mental Illness, Abuse in all its ugly forms were way too prevalent to use “ideal” anywhere near those memories. I can be generous now– after years of therapy and God and Oprah– to say they did the best they could with what they had. But seriously? Their best? It sucked.

So what am I thankful for?

I am thankful for teachers who took a special interest. I’m thankful for the preschool teacher who took me home. For the English teacher who liked my writing. For the teacher who shared her lunch. For the drama teacher who listened.

I am grateful to the Grandparents who did the best they could to give me some very ideal stories. Who gave me respite and hope for a future. Who gave me something to hang on to when I didn’t have much else.

I’m thankful to the friends and their families who invited me over and let me see a different way.

I’m thankful that in all that darkness, I had people who pierced through with beams of light that kept me warm enough to keep going.

I’m grateful that I’ve used that life experience to give what I was given to others.

I’m not about to tell you that’s the way God planned my life to be. Or that I’m glad I had the upbringing I did. He didn’t. I’m not.

I’m saying that I can look back and in all that inky black, I can see some light. I can remember laughing. I can remember being cared for and helped. And I am grateful for the fact the light was there AND I AM GRATEFUL I CAN SEE IT.

I know I could look back and say it was all bad. Ugly. Terrible. No bright spots whatsoever.

But that isn’t true. And I’m grateful.