or Count Your Blessings (instead of sheep)
We have much to be grateful for this November. I gripe a lot about my current life situation (see my previous post) and I' not full of bubbly good cheer right now. But this does not mean that I'm not unaware of the things in my life that I need to be truly thankful for.
1. Hubby is chugging along. Last January we weren't sure that he would continue to be putting one foot in front of the other but his last big health reveal showed him doing pretty darned well, all things considered.
2. It's costing us a fortune to keep Hubby "pretty darned well" but so far we've been able to afford it and the new meds have brought his blood pressure down to near normal range. That's a real victory. So the meds are worth it and we hope to continue to be able to pay the bills.
3. Luie is thriving after his excursion into the wilds of Prairie Village, Kansas. I keep grabbing him and scolding him for sending his family into spasms of terror, but he just licks my nose and hangs his head further out the car window.
4. Gus has teeth. Every one of those teeth is now worth a pound of gold but he can chew with his back molars just find, even if he can no longer gnaw anything. And again, like Hubby's meds, we have been able to afford to pull his teeth when he needs them extracted.
5. Luie still has his eyes. They may produce even more limited eyesight than we initially suspected (he now stays close to walls and he's having trouble figuring out how to enter the house through the front door) but the hugely expensive eye meds keep him from suffering any pain (according to the ophthalmologist he visits every six months) and (once again) we have been able to afford his meds and doctors.
6. Our house is still standing and keeps us cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It may not be the house of our dreams but it certainly is the house we can afford and it serves the purpose of keeping us protected from the world.
7. We have phones -- both land-line and cell. We have DSL computer service with a company we like. We have a huge TV with DVR connectivity and 287 channels for TV watching. This really is a big deal -- considering many of my students are living without electricity because they can't pay their bills this holiday.
8. We have two running jalopies. When one doesn't operate, the other one does. The newer Lincoln (and I use the term tongue-in-cheek) has been towed twice this week but the old gray Lincoln has stood the drive across the state line and down the 18th Street Expressway both times the Lincoln wouldn't go (something about fuel lines and sensors). However, we've been able to afford the repairs on the pink Lincoln and right now it's running once again. Who knows for how long? But we don't have a car payment to make and our insurance premiums are low.
9. We own a lot of household conveniences. We have a fairly new stove which both bakes and broils. We have great little microwave and a lovely new slow cooker. The frig in the kitchen is small and old but it is subsidized by an even older frig in the garage. Still both chill and freeze and work just fine. We have a dishwasher we run every day and it cleans even pots and pans miraculously. Though I might gripe big time about having to up and downstairs, we have a washer and dryer in the basement and never have to schlep clothes to the laundromat.
10. We have family who loves us and shows us her caring in both big and small ways. We know she has our back even though we live 800 miles apart. It may not be a huge family -- but it is a strong tie.
11. I've had a job for the last six years that has allowed us to make substantial savings toward a retirement that I had done little to plan for. Now I have a tidy little nest egg (which may not last all that long in today's economy) put away so I can actually retire before I die. Moreover, this job has been mostly satisfying in a more emotional way. I'm glad I'm ending my career the way I started out -- as a teacher.
12. All three of the family members still have their "brains" in tact. We can think, laugh, joke, love, and remember most of the good times we shared. Two of us can write intelligent prose while the third one can figure out logic and spacial problems with ease. Together we make a pretty good little family unit.