Every day this past week has begun and ended with the wailings of the fog horns from the shoreline of our bay, concealed in a cloak of mystery. During the day, the warmth of the sun burns away the mist to reveal crisp blue skies and emerald landscapes filled with splashes of ginger and gold. Bales of hay, corn stalks, pumpkins of varying sizes and baskets filled with magenta mums have popped up everywhere. And my evenings now include sitting cozily with my Hubby by the fireplace while sharing our thoughts from the day.
It’s October and this weekend is Thanksgiving, one of my favorite holidays. I love decorating our home, connecting with the family, dressing up and pausing to truly reflect on the good things in my life. And this year, I can’t help but feel a deeper sense of gratitude than ever before.
Living with a global pandemic dominating the news and our lives has made it a tough and distressing year for all of us. But no matter what our circumstance, I believe there is a lot to be grateful for, something we lose sight of way too often these days.
Taped to the corner of my front window is a small printed copy of the Canadian flag with a heart in the middle instead of the traditional red maple leaf. Back in March, people all over the Island placed these flags along with cut-outs of hearts and rainbows on their windows. Together with nightly pot banging, people joined as a community to show support and thanks to our Health Care workers. These front liners worked tirelessly to save the lives of those ravaged by the virus and protect and treat anyone with a medical emergency or life-threatening disease. And even though the nightly pot banging eventually stopped, the dedication and efforts of these astounding professionals to save lives has not.
In early April, it felt like everyone on the Island tuned into the local TV station CHEK the night they hosted ‘Rock for Relief’ Living Room Concert featuring the Island’s top musical talents performing from their own homes. The concert raised over $500,000 in 90 minutes for the Rapid Relief Fund. In 52 days, this Fund grew to $6 million, with the monies disbursed to Island charitable organizations serving those hard-hit by the COVID-19 crisis.
This afternoon I stood in a socially distanced line outside Mitchell’s Farm Market. Everyone was wearing masks. Once at the front of the line, I sanitized my hands, picked up one of the cleaned baskets and entered after the guard at the door said it was okay for me to do so. Inside the store the floors were marked with one-way arrows. No one seemed to waiver or wander from the designated route. I heard the person in front of me thank the cashier for their efforts at transforming the shopping experience so we could all be safe. In my heart, I also thanked the customers for doing their part.
Today I received a ‘Happy Thanksgiving’ card in the mail. The sender wrote, “Some days it can seem hard to find the silver lining, but the act of continuing to look for it has reinforced how important our mindset is in how we experience the world around us.”
It’s remembering that difficult times tend to be ones in which we grow the most. When we find ourselves tired at the end of a long day, it means we’ve worked hard and even if we don’t know it, we’ve made a difference. We’re reminded that while it’s easier to be thankful when things are going well, it’s more powerful to be equally thankful during our trials. It starts with finding one small thing to be thankful for every day.