Giving Thanks

It’s Canadian Thanksgiving. The hills around our home are splotched in orange and red and gold; the palette of autumnal splendour. The sun burns white to the southeast and the sky is lined in wisps of silver, a veil to soften that burning light.

My studio window looks out over an almost naked birch, faintly adorned in the fading gold of last summer’s dress. Beyond it the valley gently falls and rises in a wave of glacial remembrance, golden light bouncing from burnished maple to burnished maple. The great celebration of life before the big winter sleep.

Autumn … the season of letting go; of surrender.

I surrender.

I am in the autumn of my life. The great letting go. Releasing the toxic need to be perfect; to please everyone; to be anyone other than myself.

I embrace my non-manicured working hands, toughened by hours of labouring on the farm. Hands calloused from mucking stalls and cleaning paddocks and raking grass. Stiff and sore from weed whacking almost every day all summer to keep the edges on 20 acres of paddocks tidy. Hands charged with gentle muscle memory from finessing my feel of the reins while training my feisty mare, Sophi. Hands no one would call pretty. My wedding rings are married to that finger now. These are working hands.

I am thankful.

My hair, burnished by summer’s sun, is at least four inches longer than it was in March. It falls idly down my back or gets tucked in a pony tail as it hasn’t done for years. It’s ever-longer layered mass is silvering, my own non-chemical ombre created with what remains of last March’s salon colour. Somehow I look more myself than ever with this messy, care-free mop.

I am thankful.

The summer of Covid was harsh and yet kind. I’m down two dress sizes and fit from all the hours of farm labour. I sleep well. My health is more resilient. My mind is clear. My spirit buoyed. I have felt no need, nor desire, to be exposed to situations that might compromise that. I know what debilitating illness feels like. Adrenal fatigue is an ever-present ghost prompting me not to take unnecessary chances. I listen ~ for my own sake and for the safety of those around me. I feel healthier than I have in years.

And I am thankful.

The months have seen the passage of many people out of my life as they negotiate these unprecedented times in their own way. And yet I have also been gifted with new friends who choose to travel this path of uncertain times with like heart and mind. Supportive in spirit and community. On the farm with the horses this is important. We help one another so together we thrive.

And I am thankful.

Our journey through the pandemic these past few months has endured its own challenges, but we have chosen the path of faith over fear; of gratitude over greed. To experience the joy while honouring the sorrow. Some days are easier than others, still the intention is to thrive not merely survive. And so it is. Solution-oriented rather than problem solving. There is a difference.

And so, I give thanks for all that is. For a big-hearted caring husband of integrity who loves me; for family and good friends who support me; and for a plethora of four-legged furry kids who keep my feet firmly planted on the ground.

For Canada, the country I call home, I give thanks.

We cannot know the end from the beginning. We can only determine our attitude as we negotiate the path and surrender to the experience of it. There is great power in letting go.

Be well.

Happy Thanksgiving …

Dorothy

~*~

©Dorothy E. Chiotti … All Rights Reserved 2020 … Aimwell CreativeWorks

#Free Write Friday: Gratitude

fwf1

~*~

Gratitude

Where there is no gratitude,

There is only the absence of gratitude;

An empty soul.

If we cannot be grateful

We cannot acknowledge

The bounty there is in the world

And the heart of Love

That creates it.

If we have no gratitude

We cut ourselves off

From all that is good

And drown in a puddle of self-pity.

If we cannot be grateful

We undermine the

Power of others to give;

Deny them the blessing

Of being received.

When we cannot be grateful

Misery is the friend that

Denies us our heart’s desire.

*

To be grateful is to laugh

In the face of adversity.

To send the gods of war,

Spawned by greed, packing.

To be grateful is to bring

Peace to our hearts;

To acknowledge that to

Be fully engaged with life

Is enough.

For those who lack

Gratitude pursue death.

Embrace gratitude, and

Choose life.

~*~

To mind is brought all those who suffer disaster, lose everything and are yet grateful to be alive. They count the blessing of life itself and rise to the challenge of rebirth and renewal. To all I wish peace and healing.

~*~

For some reason the #FWF challenge didn’t show up on my reader or in my email so I’m a day late with this.

Still, it is an excellent challenge and, inspired by the words of a great man, I am grateful for the chance to participate.

The older I get the more gratitude I feel. My life is not perfect. I have enough health concerns to keep me grounded and certainly I’ve lived in survival mode most of my life. Still, I am grateful for everything that has brought me to a point where soul healing is in process, my life is opening up and I can finally see myself for who I truly am.

Self-awareness brings healing. To have a chance to heal on terra firma is a great blessing indeed.

And I am grateful for this and all the people (and my horse) who make this possible.

free-write-friday-kellie-elmore

Thanks for stopping by,

Dorothy

~*~

©Dorothy Chiotti, Aimwell CreativeWorks 2013