Tuesday, July 28, 2015

A Day To Be Thankful

It's a day when I need to remind myself to be thankful.

I'm thankful that I'm still here. That despite all the endless health problems, I'm still kicking. Maybe not as vigorously as I once did, but there's still a two-step or even a -- if I'm lucky -- pas de deux left in me.

I'm thankful that my problem is over-eating and not starvation. The grim fact is most of the world doesn't have enough food. I suffer from a lack of willpower and not a lack of substance.

I'm thankful that the good guys still outnumber the bad guys in the world, despite all the press coverage given to the villains. Each day millions of us get up and go to work and love each other and do the best we can. We keep the world working. We are the true heroes.

I'm thankful that Americans are the most generous people in the world. Yes, we're wealthy and certainly spoiled, but we give more money to the less fortunate than any other country in the world. We fight poverty, starvation, ignorance, and disease, and we pray and hope people find better lives and sometimes we stumble in our eagerness, but we try.

I'm thankful that books have always been a part of my life. I have spent most of my live in worlds that don't exist and living lives that could have never been mine. I'm thankful for all the wonderful authors who have touched my life: J.R.R. Tolkien, Terry Pratchett, Stephen R. Donaldson, Mary Stewart, Holly Lisle, Glen Cook, Susanna Gregory, Jim Butcher, Jack McDevitt, James Rollins, Clive Cussler, Rita Mae Brown, C.S. Lewis, Neal Stephenson, Caroyln Hart, Tony Hillerman, Mary Brown, David Brin, Robert Jordan, Robert Asprin, Lindsey Davis, Arthur C. Clarke ... The list goes on and on.

I'm thankful that we can remember to laugh even when we don't feel like it. Humor is an uniquely human quality. I'm thankful for humorists, such as: Bob Hope, Dave Barry, Jean Kerr, Patrick McManus, Mark Twain, Ellen Degeneres, Bud Abbott, Lou Costello, Don Knotts, Tim Conway, Lucille Ball, Carol Burnett, Dawn French, and many others.

I'm thankful for my readers, those of this page and my books. Their feedback and support makes the writing flow easier. Many times I'm discouraged and think I should give up, but then I'll get an email or comment or someone buys a book, and I keep putting those words on paper.

I'm thankful for science. Admittedly, it has made horrible mistakes, but it has given us amazing things and opened the universe to us. It's humbling to look at all the things I don't know and exciting to think of all the things I can learn. We can use technology to make our lives and environment better. All things are possible, and science helps make those possibilities into realities.

I'm thankful for my family and friends. Without their love, I don't know what I'd be or where I'd be, but I suspect I wouldn't like it. They enrich, exasperate, excite, and exalt my life. I wouldn't have it any other way even if I could.

I'm thankful for my faith, my many blessings, and my connection with God. Life is good, despite its problems or maybe because of them. Life's ironies and surprises keep my interest as nothing else can. I hope I live a long time. I hope you live a long time, too. Let's grow old together, and be thankful for our long years.

Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made:
Our times are in His hand
Who saith "A whole I planned,
Youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid!"
-- Robert Browning

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