IMG_6208I have no idea why I took this photo.  Nor do I have any idea why I am posting it today.  I don’t feel like posting flowers or trails, creeks, or mountains.  Really I don’t know what I am feeling like right now, but I know my heart is so full and I want to write.  Yes, I have a journal, but for some reason, I will write here.

I celebrated my birthday at my home group this morning.  My daughter was there (and gave me my chip), a friend (normie) came, and a whole room full of people I got sober with or around.  My friend who usually celebrates with me was there – for some reason she is celebrating next week.  She is sober 366 days longer than me, and I treasure her friendship.  I treasure who she is as a human being.  I love her.

One man shared about recently losing his mother.  He talked about trying to pray to a God he not only doesn’t understand, but doesn’t believe in.  I love how God answers those prayers!  It was a moving story and I was crying.

Another friend’s wife was rushed to the ER last weekend and when they opened her up, they saw that she is full of stage 4 cancer.  Oh dear Lord, they just celebrated their 51st wedding anniversary.  He is devastated.  He said that room was the only place he could come and cry openly. He was not alone, we were all crying.  We have known him for 28 years.  We have known her for 28 years.  Their relationship was rocky from time to time, but it was a real marriage.  They saw each other through every thing that occurs in 51 years of marriage.  He and I have loved and hated each other, but in the end, it is love that prevails.  I would go to the ends of the earth for him.  Thank God.  Of myself, I would be stuck in hate and resentment.  But with God’s help, we can love each other and not be stuck in old fights.

I looked at him.  Now in his 70s.  He’s had many knee surgeries and his legs are bowed so severely I don’t know how he walks.  When he got sober, he was in his 40s and he was so deliciously handsome.  And so flirtatious!  We flirted and fought and flirted some more.  He left his wife for a while and then we REALLY flirted.  I am pleased to report that nothing ever happened between us.  Again, thank God.  Left to my own devices, selfish passion would have won out over any inconvenient morals.

I can’t write down all the things that were said at that meeting.  I wish I could.  It was a wonderful meeting and it wasn’t about me.  Thank God.

I was too sick to go to Mass last night, so my friend and I went after breakfast.  She belongs to my old church, the one where I came back to the faith.  These days, I would probably call it “Catholic Lite,”  but this morning old memories came flooding back.  When we sang the Lord’s Prayer, I remembered it from when I reluctantly came back to church.  I loved holding hands and singing the Our Father. I loved the way they call up birthdays after Mass and we all sing Happy Birthday.  Instead of names, we sing “Happy Birthday, God Bless You, Happy Birthday to You!”  I remember the priests who were there back in the early 90s.  One retired as a well loved, highly respected Monsignor.  The other is in prison.  They both helped me immensely.  That church was the perfect place for me to travel the path I needed to travel, and I am sure it is the same for many others.  In that church basement was where I thoughtlessly applied for my job 19 years ago at a job fair.

After Mass, I sat outside with my friend and we talked.  And talked. And talked.

I don’t know really what I am feeling.  Gratitude.  Love.  Age.  More gratitude, more love, and more age.  Roots.  Deep, deep roots.  I feel a deep calm.  In fact, I think I am going to take a nap.  On a cool, misty, raining Sunday afternoon.

How could I ever thank God adequately?

‘Thank you’ is too short.

All the words are too flowery and might be seen as hyperbole or superficial fluff.

To have lived for all these years, thanking God, and turning my will and life over to him on a daily basis has been amazing.

I can see His grace poured freely all over my life and relationships.

I just continue to thank Him and see where He takes me and who I will encounter along the way.  It will be good because it will be God’s will.

Deo Gratia.



This entry was posted in Faith, Family, Friends, Gratitude, History, Sobriety, The Church. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Gratitude

  1. Syd says:

    I’m glad that it was a good meeting and a happy birthday. Devastating about the stage IV cancer. I think that getting old is sad because the odds are that so many people we love will die from disease and eventually just old age. My mother said that she hoped to be the last one standing which is pretty close at 95. LOL.

    • I used to say I hoped to have a very small funeral, because I would die very old and all my friends would already be gone. I don’t think that sounds so good anymore.

  2. Annette says:

    First, the things I noticed in the picture was that the phone has a cord and you have a lovely throat. Now let me explain that observation before you ban me from reading you anymore! LOL When I lost 50lbs last year, my throat and my chin were the changes that I really enjoyed the most. I loved having a thinner face and NO double chin! So really, I am just admiring what you apparently naturally have that I had to work for. I hope that makes sense. lol

    It sounds like a very moving meeting. Having roots and relationships with long term friends is a beautiful gift in this life. I love how you are able to take the good with the bad in people. You accept them for who they are at any given moment. I think that is considered living and extending the grace of God to others just as it has been given unto you.

  3. Mary LA says:

    Such a moving post — how we do change if we are open and receptive to changing. And sometimes, even when we are not!

    Prayers for your friend and his wife with cancer.

  4. There have been times when I could literally FEEL God changing my heart.

    Thanks for the prayers. They really need them.

  5. Kelly says:

    I know this is a late comment, but I’m sure you’ll still see it. I remember singing The Lord’s Prayer! Funny, I hadn’t thought of that in so long! I’m trying to teach my son the prayer, maybe it will be easier for him to learn in song? Hmmmm….

    Anyway, thanks so much for sharing!

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