Thankful in the Small Things

November 27, 2013

With an entire month devoted to being thankful on the social media platforms, it’s been a real time of reflection for me. This year it’s hard to let myself be thankful. Not for the big things. Bella, Sam, my family, friends, financial security, a home, being safe, having us healthy – I’m always beyond grateful for these. It’s the other stuff I struggle with.

It isn’t because I’m not thankful for what we have.

It’s because I am, and then I feel guilty.

Many of the things I am thankful for are tied into loss. So much so that at times it feels so petty to be thankful for them at all.

It’s a constant battle in my head to be ok with being grateful for my life. I want to be able to just post, “Day 15 – so thankful for sleeping in!” or “Day 22 – thankful for my job!” without also having the raging thoughts of, “But you only have this because of what happened so…”

Hard to explain how this feels. I really don’t even understand. Although I know these aren’t silly things to be thankful for, inside my heart just screams, “Some of the things you should be the most thankful for are gone so little material things don’t matter!”

But y’all?

They still do matter to me. And I’m working on that being ok.

So this Thanksgiving, I am trying to be immensely aware of and thankful for the small things, even though they may have come out of loss or seem trite next to having my sons here. I’m thankful for my job, my car, cold weather, Stitch Fix arriving at the right times, speaking at Influence, my iPhone making life easier, playdates, old books that flash me back to childhood, our fireplace, that Sam told me he loves watching Walking Dead with me, clean toilets, fresh laundry, plantation shutters on our windows, the way Charlie stares at me from across the room waiting to jump on my face, Schwans for nights I don’t want to cook, and Modern Family for a dependable laugh on tough nights.

Thinking of so many of us who will sit down tomorrow and see a different table than one we pictured in months before. May your heart find happiness in the small things as best it can. They matter too.


  • Jessica

    November 29, 2013 at 8:37 pm

    I am Thankful for you sweet friend. I am thankful for your honest and for your willingness in sharing your heart. you are a blessing to me and to so many. <3

  • Lee Shapcott

    November 28, 2013 at 7:04 am

    I haven't been through ANYthing like what you've been through, but I'm struggling with the same thoughts. I am in recent months struggling with a new anxiety disorder triggered in march/april this year. I have always been a very positive thinker, especially for the little things. I lately cannot even begin to get my head around being thankful for anything when I feel like crap and struggle sometimes days in a row. I miss being openly thankful and grateful. And I know some people would say 'just do it', but it really is not that easy at times.

    Thankyou for this post

  • Jen

    November 27, 2013 at 2:08 pm

    You are such a blessing. You are so real! I am sooooooo thankful for that! I am thankful that in these tough times you still touch the heart of us reading. And although sometimes you don’t see yourself as adequate, my dear you most certainly are! There are so many people that hide behind masks, they hide their hurt, they’ve got us all fooled – But then there is you! Living out loud, allowing yourself to heal while writing, sharing yourself with us that wish we could live out loud all the time. Thank you Diana, thank you for being you! You make it so that even though I don’t know you in person, I feel like I’ve known you for years! God Bless and have an amazing Thanksgiving. <3

  • (Mrs.) Mary Lichlyter

    November 27, 2013 at 10:25 am

    God gives little things as well as big ones. Why *not* be thankful for them? If only the “perfect” things, the big things, the happy-ending things are worth mentioning, we’ll all end up having nothing to mention at all. Thank you for being aware of and thankful for the little things. They’re one of God’s ways of keeping us going.

  • Monica

    November 27, 2013 at 9:50 am

    It says a lot about you and about your faith that you still find so much…so many small things…to be thankful for. I am thankful for you and the way you have shared your life, your struggles, your realness through this space and others. You’re in my prayers today, tomorrow, and for many days to come.

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