If you follow me on social media you know what a Grinch I am. I am the self proclaimed Island Grinch but then something magical happened to me this year. I actually think I found my Christmas spirit (Gasp!), and to think it all happened thanks to the last blog post I wrote.
The true importance of the holidays is not found in the gifts under the tree. It is not found in the Christmas rush in stores or on the road. It is definitely not found in the ham and the turkey. No, it is found within you. It is the moment you welcome your invited guests into your home to celebrate with you. It is in the laughter you share with your friends at the dinner table. It’s in that little smile you get from your neighbors after you present them with a small gift, just to let them know how much you appreciate them. It’s that moment when you sit in front of your little plastic tree, with your dogs and cats at your feet, a glass of wine in your hand and your head on the shoulder of the one you love. These are the moments that truly reflect the Holidays.
So, yes, this island Grinch’s heart has finally melted and grew. We are still a week and change away from the new year but Christmas is a good time to reflect on this year. 2017 came with its sets of challenges, but even in the worst of times or in the really ugly moments there were blessings. They may have been small and inconspicuous and you may have not even realized they were blessings until much later, but blessings they were and these were mine:
Yes, you read that right. One of the worst natural disasters to hit the Caribbean in ages is also one of my biggest blessings. Irma has taught me so many valuables lessons. Resilience, perseverance, determination, strength. She taught me not to be be wasteful, to be more appreciative of the little I have and to value family. She taught me to share more and to accept the things I cannot change. She taught me the importance of life.
My family is my everything and even if I don’t tell them that enough, they are my one true blessing. I am so thankful for the time I got to spend with my parents and sister, I am thankful that I am going to get to see my brother before the end of the year, I am thankful for my marriage surviving some really challenging times, I am thankful for the man I get to call my husband and I am thankful for my paw children and their antics.
I am inspired every single day by the strong women I get to call my friends, and this year has shown me their value even more so than in other years. I am blessed with friendships. I am thankful for the old friends I had, for those still in my life and for the new friends I made. Thank you for all the laughter, the giggles, the inspiration, the motivation and the strength you have given me.
To be able to travel is a true blessing and to me, to travel truly is to live. From Miami, Nevis and Anguilla to Puerto Rico, Curaçao and Bonaire, each one of my trips this year gave me new and wonderful experiences and that is definitely something to be thankful for.
5. New perspectives
Life has a way of throwing us curve balls. I have learned to roll with the punches, take things in stride and to surf the waves life sends my way. In short, I learned to change my perspective and found that a new perspective makes dealing with the unexpected way better than crying over things you cannot change. I am thankful that I finally learned to have new perspectives.
Life is filled with pain, sorrow and really sucky moments but it is also filled with beauty, love and happiness. These may sometimes be few and far between but they are what makes life worth living. So this holiday season, enjoy the time with your family, wake up with a smile each morning, focus on the good and share some of your joy with others. This is the time to reflect and count our blessings.