The candied corn has not even grown stale and Christmas decorations are all over Indy. The lights have been strung from the top of Monument Circle. Christmas music is playing on radio stations.
Attention people! You will put some RESPEK on Thanksgiving.
And, why not? In our materialistic and selfie-driven world, Thanksgiving allows us to focus on so many people and trappings we take for granted. It is the time of year in which we are advised to make a list of things for which we are grateful. Some familiar tropes come to mind; family, employment, home, safety, the usual suspects.
For an unusual ritual, how about being grateful for the issue that causes you the most angst. What is it that you must overcome to be faithful to the thing you love?
I was an avid reader as a child. I would read anything and everything I could get my hands on. I remember a family friend gave me free access to his bookcase. I selected the thickest set of books I could find. It was Victor C. Andrews, Flowers in the Attic series. As an adult, I understand that this not exactly classic literature. Each book was over 400 pages and I saw completing each one as a challenge. Those tales intrigued and frightened me. Words on a page can elicit such strong emotion. This love of reading grew into a desire to create stories that would allow my readers to feel – love, longing, courage, gratitude.
I love to write. It is my calling and my passion. My biggest hindrances to writing as a career are time, work/financial obligations, fear and self-doubt. How can I afford health insurance if I am a writer? What if I am unable to sell my books? What if I reveal too much and people judge me? The struggle is real. The love of writing compels me to sacrifice for the thing I love most. My obstacles push me to not give up. I fight for time to create.
The truth is your problem serves a purpose (courtesy of TD Jakes). If I did not have financial obligations, I may not launch a marketing campaign large enough. In essence, I may just play it safe and small. When the odds are against you, you have to play big. Challenges can be the springboard to success. Ask yourself, what can I learn from this hardship? How can I use it to my advantage.
I am grateful for the struggle. I know I cannot take one second or opportunity for granted. I know I must be ready and not ‘getting’ ready when the big break presents itself. It is hard but that is the point. If it were easy, everyone would do it.
What challenge are you grateful for?