When I was younger, I’m not sure when, my mom had me write grateful lists with her before bed. I’m not sure how long this lasted and I really don’t fully remember many details other than her laying in bed with me and this small journal with a rose on the front and some sort of gold clasp.
Despite my useless memory, this has been something I’ve continued to do up until now. Sometimes I write it. Sometimes I think it. They’re always concise however I’ve had moments where I over-analyze. I start to play that ‘what comes to mind first game’ to make the list as ‘authentic’ as possible OR I start to put myself down when a chunk of the items on the list are the dreaded ‘material goods’. Still to this day, there are times I feel bad about including those ‘inconsequential things’ like candles or new dish towels- you know, the materials things we’re not supposed to value greatly but really do ( I mean, have you ever smelled a pumpkin spice candle?! Common…). But truthfully, they both belong on the list; the ‘renounce all worldly possessions and value spirit and relationship’ AND the ‘Bath and Body Works 2 for 1 sale TOTALLY made my day’. You can be a yogi and have both on your grateful list. You can be a human and have both on your grateful list.
Today I found a few old lists that I had written down while cleaning. From back when I was 14. On the lists were friends, family, pets, relatives, crushes, material things, material things scratched out, material things written in again and so on and so on.
You know what was never on the lists? And I mean never, not even now when I think of them before going to sleep.
Sure, I value myself enough to spend money on candles and yoga classes and teacher trainings and to sit down in meditation when I can and relax into a bubble bath when I can, but never once have I been actively GRATEFUL for myself in these lists. Since youth, I never even considered it. I looked at all the names on my lists, names of people I love dearly, people who I was grateful for/to because they were exactly who they are which in turn let me be who I am, but I never actively participated in being grateful for who I am. I never said thank you to myself- and I don’t mean in a selfish way or a conceded way, thats not how gratuity works, but in a genuine, proud and humble way.
On all of your lists, if you choose to create them, I hope you think of yourself and are grateful for who you have been, who you are and who you are constantly becoming. And after you thank yourself and your loved ones and maybe even your not-so loved ones who have taught you things you needed to learn in this lifetime…I hope you thank your couch and those candles you just bought at bath and body works.