Three Thanks A Week

Share your gratitude, once a week in three easy bites

December 28 Just Enough

with 4 comments

my holiday friend, snapped from the back door window

It seems, as one becomes older, 

That the past has another pattern, and ceases to be a mere sequence— 

Or even development: the latter a partial fallacy

Encouraged by superficial notions of evolution,

Which becomes, in the popular mind, a means of disowning the past.

The moments of happiness—not the sense of well-being,

Fruition, fulfilment, security or affection,

Or even a very good dinner, but the sudden illumination— 

We had the experience but missed the meaning,

And approach to the meaning restores the experience

In a different form, beyond any meaning

We can assign to happiness.  

                          - T.S. Eliot, The Dry Salvages

 

I spent the holiday in a quiet thought-scape for as much time as I could string together. I tried to let the empty space fill me up before I turned up the heat in the house, made a fresh pot of afternoon coffee, snugged up with a book or switched to the web and television.

At some point during my reflection I realized I forgot to post to Three Thanks last Monday. I was too busy, maybe. More likely I was too caught up in the milieu of “the season” – gifts, travel plans, striving for order in the chaos we’ve created for ourselves and somewhere on the bottom of my list might have been “be thankful” – but I don’t know because I never seem to get to the end of those lists. By now I should realize that “be thankful” needs to be at the top, not at the bottom.

I blame my Western heritage. Westerners focus on the goal, not the journey. Our institutions of all kinds are focused on getting to the “end” and reaping the reward so that we can either do it all again to get to the next end, or “relax”. It’s what we do and it’s dreadfully unfulfilling but we don’t recognize that because we have “the experience” but miss “the meaning”. The meaning is what matters. We are indeed “not the same who left that station” and for that, I am thankful.

I am thankful that

  1. a great cold spilled over the country and re-warmed my heart
  2. T.S. Eliot showed up in my quiet space, uninvited but always welcome
  3. brightly colored birds kept me company until the house was again filled with love.

For what are you thankful?

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Written by Grace

December 28, 2010 at 9:31 am

Posted in Uncategorized

4 Responses

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  1. I’m thankful today that:

    1) so many people get to enjoy the holidays they love so much (I odn’t particularly care for them, but that doesn’t mean I don’t get oodles of smiles out of seeing my friends all giggly about them!)

    2) Warm air is returning for new years so I can thaw out a bit

    3) New books to read to give me some way to escape the hectic pace I put myself through.

    Sean

    December 28, 2010 at 10:06 am

  2. This week, with snow just out my back door, I am thankful:

    1) That I took this holiday season back and made it into what I needed, enjoying the journey.
    2) For the snow that blanketed my world on Christmas day creating a silent, cold wonder.
    3) For time to watch old holiday movies with a blanket, hot cocoa and love in the room.

    Noe

    December 28, 2010 at 10:17 am

  3. – slow days spent in good company
    – peace and quiet
    – Santa

    sallysilvera

    December 28, 2010 at 10:19 am

  4. This week, with snow out my back door, I am thankful:

    1) That I took back the holiday this year to make it what I needed and enjoyed the journey.
    2) For snow that blanketed the land on Christmas day to create a beautiful and silent wonder.
    3) For quiet nights in front of old holiday movies with a blanket, hot cocoa and love in the room.

    Noe

    December 28, 2010 at 10:28 am


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