I have an app that asks me the same question every night: “What are you grateful for today?”
I want to say I answer regularly and consistently, that my ongoing gratitude has brought me peace, fulfillment and warmer feet. I see the question so often that I barely register its meaning. It becomes that pile of stuff on the dresser that ceases to exist because it’s sat there for so very long.
Tonight I was struck by the adorability of my cocker spaniel, the way she licks her lips just before I put down her water bowl. I thought about toasted bread floating in a bowl of warm broth on a cold night, and how easy it would be for me to concoct such a simple and delicious meal without a second thought. I was given and gobbled a chocolate-covered espresso bean, discovered amazingly plump pork dumplings, and finished reading a novel. The book transported me, for a few hours, to a new world, and I was happy to be lost. I took a nap, listened to the radio, read a funny email from a friend. I have a hot shower and clean towels and lots of pens. No new bills arrived. My dogs smiled with their tails, rested their heads in my lap, and let me take lots of goofy photos. Downton Abbey is back in all its sentimental glory and I watched the internet react to last night’s U.S. premiere. The temperatures are absurdly low, but the snow stopped, and the sun shone, and the pipes kept themselves together. I can hear the heat running and I have extra blankets close to the bed. I can close my eyes without worry and I am grateful, I am grateful, I am grateful. Even for the piles of crap.