It has become a time-honoured and treasured tradition of mine at Thanksgiving, to simply cease and purposely ponder the notable events and people who have influenced my life, and take the time to thank and appropriately acknowledge them.  So, thank you.

Yes, you. The person reading this. Because if you found your way here, then that is a blessing for which I am truly thankful.  And I’m here to remind you how truly special you are.  I am thankful for every connection I have because each and every one of you brings something wonderful to my life. You bring you.

 

 

 

I have met so many amazing people this year.  People who have accepted me into their motley menageries with warm and welcoming arms.  People who have believed in me and who have been there with me as I’ve been changing my life. People who have been beacons lighting my way.

“At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.” ~ Albert Scweitzer

There are some of you who have been there for me when I’ve  needed a friend. Whether in times of sadness or of celebration, I am grateful for your presence in my life.

I have to give a special thank you to my #SpiritChat,  #InspireChat, #PocChat, and #BeTheOne families. No. Not families – Family. Because I’ve learned that we are One.  We are all connected at the core. We just don’t all make it to every single family gathering. 

And I would be remiss not too include #LeadFromWithin, #bealeader, and  #schools2life, even though  I can rarely make those sessions.  When I do, I am always welcomed with open arms. I learn so much, and have a lot to share.  I always leave feeling uplifted.

It is the unfeigned friendship, the humouring harmony and the unmistakable merriment that marks such auspicious assemblage that makes our time together so very special. You have each earned a special place in my heart and I have somehow found a sense of belonging.  And even when I cannot manage to tear myself away to join you, just knowing that you’re all out there grants a gratifying grace, and ever, I find a smile.

I grow more into myself every day with all of you walking beside me.

 

 

It is a lovely tradition in our family to go around the dinner table at Thanksgiving and take turns expressing that for which we are thankful.  This year, I can honestly say, I am thankful for everything.  The good, the bad, and the ugly, because it all just is.  Every moment truly is the guru.

I have learned so much this year.  There is a lesson in everything.  And as I embrace each learning, I become more aware and I become more “me.”

 

 

There are so many very special people who have touched my life deeply this  year, but there is one that stands out – my beautiful friend Alex Ajnas.

Alex, I am not sure I can express with mere words, the gratitude I feel for finding you. Or I guess more accurately, for you finding me.  You saw something in me that I didn’t know was there, and you believed in me until I learned to believe in myself.  My heart is full and overflowing with love and gratitude.  My soul is bright with light and grace.  You helped me face my fears, and with your love and support, I learned how to open my heart.  You have been a mentor, a friend, and an inspiration. I believe in your courage, your compassion, your integrity and your strength.  I believe in your goodness. You live your life by leading with your heart and making a difference to others every day.  I am so grateful  to count myself amongst them.  You amaze me with all that you are, and all that you do. You have touched my life and I am forever changed.  I love you, my dear friend.  I always have. I always will.

 

 

There are so many others who have made a difference to me this year, family and friends. People who matter to me.  People who inspire me. People whose blogs I read.  People who have reached out to me. And people I have been honoured to reach out to.  I have a long list of individual thank you notes to send out because I believe it’s important to let people know how much they mean to you.

I am so blessed to have so many people amazing people in my life who love me.  People who I too love dearly.

I am truly thankful to have happened upon each of you along the celestial string of my fanciful yet valiant adventure through life.

 

 

I have an unexpected addition to the list of people I am thankful for this year.  I am thankful for me.  Wow! I’ve never said that before! But, I am so thankful that I had the courage to face myself and to step forward to claim the gift of my life. I feel so empowered.  This year, I came home to my heart.  And I know I will prevail with peace no matter what life brings me.

I’m not saying, I won’t stumble, but I do know that when I do, that all I have to do is look within.  I know without any doubt, that I am strong enough to get back up every time I fall. And I will get back up with more determination to stand. Maybe one day I will be able to hold  my balance and my falls will turn to glorying tumbles as I somersault through the air in exultation!

The key, I’ve discovered, is surrender.  Surrendering to the moment.  Surrendering to the joy.  Always listening to and honouring my soul’s whispers.  Surrender is a powerful force.

I see me clearly.  I know I already am all that I will be.  It’s all here inside me.  How powerful is that ?!

There are many things I have yet to do, and whatever those things will be, I will carry them all out with love, gratitude and kindness.  Wherever I go, I will go with all my heart.

This has truly been the best year of my life despite its challenges and the changes looming on the horizon.  It’s all in the way you choose to look at things.

 

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. “ ~ Melody Beattie

 

My life is so very blessed.  I feel the magic. And I can now throw my head back and laugh at how perfect it all is, for I have found my faith.

 

 

I think most of all, I am thankful for today and every day that I have the opportunity to make a difference.

I choose to live my life with purpose and with passion, and I intend to make the most of every moment.  I choose to honour my calling and I choose to help as many people as I can along the way.

My heart is full of love, and when I share it, it replenishes itself anew. My gratitude is boundless.

“It’s up to us to be the change. And even though this world needs so much more. There’s so much to be thankful for.”  (from the lyrics for “Thankful” by Josh Groban)

 

Wishing each of you and yours a very Happy Thanksgiving – with a special thank you for being who you are. You matter to me.  And you DO make a difference.

With Much Love & Gratitude

Shelley xox

Please share your thoughts.
What are you thankful for?

55 Responses to Giving Thanks

  1. Touching post Shelley!

    You said it all within your wonderful post, which leaves nothing for me to say other than “Thank YOU” for being who you are, and touching so many people around you with your warmth. :)

    Yes indeed, though it’s Thanksgiving, but I personally feel it shouldn’t just be one or two days of giving thanks for the things we have or we don’t, for the ups and down, for the friends we have or we don’t. I think we need to be thankful and express our gratitude- every single day for the smallest of things – isn’t it? I guess some people just don’t realize how beautiful life is, and the fact that we are living in itself is a gift to be thankful for.

    Thank you for sharing more of you with us. And wishing you a very Happy Thanksgiving as well . :)

    • Thank you, dear Harleena. You honour me with your kindness. I completely agree. Every day should be celebrated in gratitude! Life is beautiful. I see it sparkling within and around me. And I see it in you, too. I appreciate you, my beautiful friend. Thank you for all that you are and all that you do. xo

  2. Julie Hinecker says:

    AbSOULutley Inspiring read Shelley! You have also rocked my world! It is an awesome feeling to give so much LOVE out & to receive it back 10 fold! We shall keep the Love Flowing & Growing! XOXO

  3. Beautiful, dear Shelley! I LOVE this post & am so grateful for many of the same family members I’ve found this year too! Thanks for being YOU & for sharing your lovely spirit & generous heart with us all! To making a difference!!! <3

    • Thank you, dear Jennifer! Yes, we are so blessed to be a part of such a beautiful and loving family. I’ll second that! Here’s to making a difference! And Here’s to you beautiful, Jennifer. I am so thankful for you and your beautiful glow.

  4. Wow – just returning from being with my mother in ICU and this hit the high note on all points regarding simply being thankful. I have tweeted it out to others and I thank you for your words, your message, your inspiration and for simply being you…my friend and part of my family!

  5. Peg says:

    What a wonderful Thanksgiving of your spirit and heart, Shelley! I remind myself daily to be grateful and when I stop to do so, the tension drips away and I soak in all that is. This is lovely and I am grateful that you shared it. May you always have enough: inspiration, love, joy, wonderment, awe, fun, laughter, self-love, courage, faith, belief, and hope. Peace~
    Peg

    • Thank you so much, dear Peg. Yes, gratitude makes everything a little easier and makes the world a whole lot brighter. I am thankful for your kind words and wishes. I wish the same for you. You are a blessing in my life. xo

  6. Lynne Lee says:

    Shelley THANK YOU <3 It was a joy to read your post…so glad our paths crossed, you are a delight x

    • Thank you, Lynne Lee. You bring joy with you everywhere you go. I, too, am very glad to share my journey with you, my wonderful friend. You shine so brightly, lighting my way. xo

      • Adele says:

        Simply want to say your article is as asngiishtno. The clarity for your put up is simply great and that i can suppose you’re a professional on this subject. Well along with your permission let me to clutch your RSS feed to stay up to date with approaching post. Thanks a million and please continue the rewarding work.

  7. Donna Potter says:

    You really bless me Shelley! Your words are rich and so are you!

  8. Ande Lyons says:

    LOVE LOVE LOVE this post Shelley… you share your insights and thoughts with such depth and heart – what a treat to read! I especially love the beginning quote from the oh so inspirational Brian Tracy.

    With deep appreciation and gratitude for YOU,
    Ande

  9. Shelley,

    What a lovely post!! I am so honored to have as part of the #inspirechat community. You bring so much love, compassion and wisdom that I know many are thankful for. It brings me so much to what you blossom since we have connected, especially with you embracing who you are and now being thankful for yourself! This is what I hope for everyone. Keep enjoying this journey and I look forward to seeing your expand even more. :) ~ Joanne

    • Thank you, Joanne! I have such gratitude to you and the rest of our beautiful family. I feel so truly blessed to be a part of something so amazing. Yes, I too hold this hope for everyone. And I am here, like you, to help as many people as we can along the way. Much love to you, dear Joanne. xo

  10. Linda Joy says:

    Thanks so much Shelley for being a light in the world! I too am grateful our paths have crossed. Your openness, love and vulnerability in your writing always inspires me. Honored to be a part of your journey.

  11. Jon M says:

    Feeling the magic… like that thinking! Remembering our blessing and expressing our gratitude are essential practices. Doing this enables more magic to happen! Thanks, Shelley, for unlocking the magic for so many. Jon

    • Dear Jon, we are all so blessed that you are part of our family. And yes, when we live in gratitude we become more aware of the magic, and we awaken the magic within ourselves. I am blessed by your friendship. Thank you for all that you are. You share your love and light so freely xo

      • Rosalinda says:

        ho fatto notare nel mio blog dopo la partita vinta domenica scorsa che alla Domenica Sportiva è stato intervistato e parlava benissimissimo l&.;93italiano#Davvero difficile trovare un calciatore che parli bene in italiano… figuriamoci uno straniero :) complimenti.

  12. Deone Higgs says:

    This was beautiful, Shelley. As Josh shared, there is truly so much to be thankful for… I’m reminded of this every single day. And I am so grateful for the blessing you are and have been in my life. Keep shining, my friend. Keep shining as brightly as you were meant to shine. Dim for no one. 😉

    • Thank you, Deone. There really is so much to be thankful for. And I am so thankful for your presence in my life. You inspire me. You believe in me. And your words often keep me on track. You are such a beautiful bright spirit. Keep shining! I love the way you glow! Always sending love and light. xo

  13. janet blaha says:

    Beautiful Shelley!

  14. Fatima says:

    Everyday is thanksgiving and thanksreceiving! Thank YOU Shelley!

  15. Karen Jolly says:

    Shelley, thank you so much for this post. This is always a busy time of year and it’s so beautiful to slow down and realize what this season is all about. :) I too am so thankful for the chat family and I am so thankful I met you there. Thank you for always sharing from the heart – it is soooo felt!

    • Thank you, Karen, I am so grateful for the family we share. You are each a blessing to me in your own special way. Thank you for sharing your beautiful heart and your wonderful words of wisdom. You always brighten my day!

  16. I seem to be joining the conversation late here, Shelley, but better late than never, right? Thank you for sharing your love and your beautiful words! Even though I don’t participate in tweet chats, I consider you part of my family — and, as you said, we are all one. I appreciate and am grateful for you! Love and Hugs, Alice

  17. Medi says:

    So touching. Thank you so much :)

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  20. Quyen says:

    I couldn’t refrain from commenting. Well written!

  21. Dawn says:

    Hi Shelley, wow, wow, wow is all I can say. My hubby ( my best friend) passed away and I had just given up on life. You have truely inspired me with your words. You’re a blessing to all those people who are hurting. Bless you Dawn.

    • Shelley Lundquist says:

      Dear Dawn, I am sorry for your pain and i am glad my words helped you at this time. If there is ever anything i can do, or if you need someone to talk to, please know you can reach out. Always sending Love & Light xo

  22. Susan says:

    Dear shelley,you are such a blessing to many reading your post as many times as I can came from hospital a few days ago after having a tonsillectomy, you keep on reminding me of the many things I should be thankful for. would like to meet you dear,you are such an amazing person, truly inspiring.

  23. Cindy Rojas says:

    Thank you, your soul and energy that flows through me when reading this article..a feeling of joy and love is what i feel for beautiful souls like yourself. Sending you love and light, yours truly.
    Cindy xx

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  27. Tamara says:

    Absolutely beautiful! I enjoyed reading you’re post. Happy thanksgiving! Sending a tremendous amount of positive energy you’re way for allowing me to read something so beautiful this morning. Thank you so much!!

  28. Sandy says:

    I am grateful to have seen your post so I could tell you how grateful I am for you. Just hours ago I finally became grateful for me and let go of my stubbornness and opened my ears and finally realized how disrespectful I had been thinking that the Father was busy I had to do it alone. I couldnt(would not) understand because my childhood home life had ingrained one thing in my heart and head and that was keep your head down don’t get noticed and nothing you say is important. I overcame that briefly when I entered nursing I am sure because serving others has such a phenomenal effect on your person you cannot help but shine. I was often criticized and complained about because I smiled so mix how but I was immune because I had my faith that that is what I was meant to be. Then things started snowballing and took a real speed up beginning in 2008 I had almost completely lost me and faith in my self and since I am a part of everything I disrespected everyone and everything with my lack of faith
    After 2 turns with the 30 day meditation challenge a a u tube video I was directed to I found that person again but more I love that person again and I feel no need to hide. I am glad you got you back welcome home and have a wonderful holiday On the 28th when I face a huge crisis I know all of you will be there with me and that everything will be just fine I deserve no less than a perfect outcast me and a final boot out of the dark forces which have tried to claim me and me in pride and stubbornness almost went to Don’t hide your light let it shine

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  34. Delorse says:

    You can find many instances in the Bible that talk about giving thanks to God and Jesus for all the blessings we’ve received and take for granted!

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