Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Authentic Gratitude

I am a very thankful person with a truly grateful heart. Some days I wake up with my heart full of thanks just for being alive again. As  motherless daughter since I was 4 - I have a different perspective on being "grateful for another day"

My mom - Betty Jean (Jackson)  Wilmer died four months shy of her 25th birthday back in 1976. This past Friday after I blogged about my hair - it hit me that she would have been 57 on that day - December 12. It is such a mixed feeling to think that I have lived longer than she did. It is mind boggling to know that she has been dead longer than she was alive.  When I think of her - I am grateful. For everything.

I am certain that my personality today was directly affected by her absence. The  trajectory of my life is forever changed by events that took place back on August 19, 1976 and I am forever grateful.

Authentic gratitude is not flimsy - it really looking at a person, an event, a situation - fill in the blank and seeing past the immediate view and understanding the how all things contribute to our lives.  The dictionary definition of gratitude is "the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful".  

There are obvious positive connotations to that but I assert that we also have to be grateful for the tragedies.  

I have no idea why my mom was allowed so little time on this earth but I am grateful that she was here - even for that ever so brief moment.

I am thankful for my life. I am thankful that Betty Jean Jackson met Albert Wilmer.

I am grateful for my family.

I am grateful for my career and all the new twists and turns it is taking.

In the holiday period - we all reflect on gratefulness a bit more - I challenge you in the new year to be grateful always. 

Make it a habit.


  1. Gratefulness is hard to find in this individualistic society, where most people believe their good fortune is due entirely to their own effort. On the life trajectory changing by a single date, I have that as well: May 11, 1993, 11 days after my 21st birthday. I came home from practice to find my father dead in my parents' room (aneurysm). I don't know where I'd be now if he were still here, but I reckon that it would be a far different place than where I currently sit, preparing for that all-important business trip to Milwaukee and the start of Hometown Soccer Club.

  2. Wow. Thanks for sharing that. Isn't is amazing to think of our lives in different scenarios and how one peg in the puzzle can just change so many outcomes?

    I am excited for you and your upcoming trip to Milwaukee. Please update us on the journey at your blog.

    Thanks for checking me out

  3. August 28, 2002...I suffered a miscarriage. After two years of trying to get pregnant, I couldn't understand how this could happen. October 26, 2003 my daughter Brooke was born. It was suddenly clear to me, this was what God had planned for me all along. I couldn't imagine a day in my life without her smile, her laughter and her love. Even in my darkest moments, I know that there is a reason for my pain. Maybe it is to make sure I never take the little things for granted and maybe it is to make sure I don't forget the really big things. Either way, part of my authenticity is to embrace the bad stuff because I can't wait to see what good things God has in store for me.

  4. I am authentically grateful for finding this blog. I finally have the confidence to get a LOSER out of my life; who just wanted to use me. For 4 years; this person wanted booty calls, money, presents, my possessions, greeting cards, phone calls from me. I received NOTHING from this person, but headaches and lies, lies, lies. I feel strong and in control now. Keep up the authentic inspiration and Happy New Year! :)

  5. Anonymous - you rock!!!!

    Now, take your renewed confidence and do something especially special for yourself. You deserve it.

  6. Nancy - I did not miss your post - thanks for sharing your authenticity with us.

    I love you, MAN