The Month of Gratitude

November is #noticeandsharethegood Month!
I have two sons.
The older – is 22. The younger is 20.
The older is severely autistic. He has no conversational language.
At times he goes above his brother’s head with his own bent head, in a loving gesture of awe, in his own fashion to express tenderness.
That the younger young man never pushes him back nor expresses annoyance is beautiful. Simply beautiful.
I cannot explain how grateful I am for the tender relationship between those two…

Give thanks

There is a tradition in Judaism that we give thanks as soon as we open our eyes when we wake up in the morning.

We are given many opportunities to give thanks from that moment on during the day, and if we can we are urged to do it at least a hundred times each day.

Looking around and finding those opportunities is an exercise in mental health, with more benefits than anti-depressants.

When darkness is growing

With November, in the Northern hemisphere, trees are becoming bare.

Daylight is decreasing.

Soon we feel like we don’t see the sun at all.

It is time to vote in the United States.

A year ago, it did not end well for all those who had not seen it come. Authoritarianism is casting such an ominous shadow that it feels difficult to give thanks for what is happening in the world.

To look for the beauty and the goodness.

To find the helpers.

To keep hope and keep the battle and keep smiling.

Keep voicing your opinions

We can disagree on so many things and still have a civil discussion.

There are so many ways to look at everything.

Just be patient and see the tenderness in a gesture that may be annoying.

Like my son does over and over out of his own love for his brother.

Always see the good in everything may bring surprises. The light will come back.

In the meantime, let us all prepare for the beautiful holiday of Thanksgiving. What will you bring to the table? Let me know!


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French blogger in the US writes on cultural differences, disabilities, religion, social media and politics.

8 thoughts on “The Month of Gratitude”

  1. Coucou “Otir”,
    Je me pose quelques minutes pour lire ces mots pleins de bon sens et de bienveillance.
    Comme tu le dis si bien “always see the good in everything may bring surprises. The light will come back”.
    Moi je suis catholique… mais je dois l’avouer, pas vraiment pratiquante. Cette année, nous célèbrerons Thanksgiving pour la 2ème fois.
    Comme tu t’en douter, nous avons découvert cette fête lors de notre parenthèse aux Etats-Unis. Avant, Thanksgiving, c’était “exotique”, du rêve à travers les films US.
    A présent, c’est un mois entier que j’adore avant les célébrations de Noël.
    Et bien que j’essaie de montrer à mes petites puces l’importance d’avoir de la gratitude tous les jours, je tiens à célébrer cette tradition qui a pris beaucoup de significations à mes yeux.
    Même sans parler de religion, je trouve cela apaisant, dans ce monde de misère et de violence quotidienne, de penser aux belles choses, aussi petites soient-elles, qui nous entourent. Un toit, une famille, des amis, prendre le temps de se remémorer de bons moments passés, ces petites citrouilles déposées par mes filles sur notre balcon et ce que les “pumpkins” représentent pour moi, etc etc.
    Je suis contente d’avoir pris ces quelques minutes avec toi. Je t’embrasse bien fort !

    1. Quelle belle tradition, Carine ! merci d’avoir partagé avec moi. Je crois sincèrement que les enfants à qui l’on enseigne tôt la valeur de la gratitude deviennent bien mieux armés lorsqu’ils seront adultes, parce qu’ils savent attirer les bonnes grâces justement par cette bonne disposition qui est la leur !

  2. Thank you for sharing your story Laurence. It is very moving, especially couples with your message of hope, for which I am grateful. So my moment of gratitude right now is that I came across your post! Merci.

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