Every November, one of my nieces makes daily thankful posts on Facebook. I read them and usually can relate to them and then think of something else that I am thankful for. But last week, I learned how truly thankful I should be for the life that I have. I attended Human Services Day in Portage County through a class that I am currently enrolled in. We learned about Mental Health and Addiction Services, the Stigma of Mental Illness, Addiction as a Disease, Portage County Children’s Services, Treating Children with Trauma. We had lunch at Center of Hope - they provide hot meals and food assistance to disadvantaged residents of Portage County. We visited homes that offer emergency shelter, homes that help men and women with addiction, places for victims of domestic abuse to feel safe, a place designed just for children who have been victims of abuse. I have never had to experience being homeless or hungry. I never needed emergency shelter. I haven’t had an addiction problem.
I am truly thankful for my husband, my late parents, my siblings, my mother in law, my blended family, my beautiful grandchildren, my warm home, a hot meal every night, the new friends that I made through the Chamber, the old friends that I met through the Chamber, my high school and college friends, the lights that turn on every night in my house, the water that runs through the faucets. I could keep going but I think you get the picture.
During this month of Thanksgiving, take a moment to think about all that you have to be grateful for and try to carry it over to December - the month of giving. Volunteer, donate food or toys to the less fortunate, visit someone with no family. We need to remember that not everyone has what you have and if you need help, please reach out to someone and ask for it! Don’t try to go it alone!