Thankful for what I don’t have

I came to a realization this morning one week after Thanksgiving. Not only am I immensely grateful for everything and everyone in my life, but I’m also immensely grateful for everyone who ISN’T in my life anymore. I’m thinking of a number of friends, family members, coworkers, etc. who came and went, either in the flash of a few days, or over months and years of drawing apart. Each of them brought something to my life in one way or another, and maybe it sounds insensitive, but they have served their purpose and moved on to other things and people. They’ve brought something to my world and left their mark, but are no longer here to see the impact it’s had.

Like the ex who stressed me out to no end by pushing me to schedule so much time with him and define our relationship, which only resulted in me dumping him and refocusing on those who make me happy or did something positive to my world. That, in turn, has resulted in stronger relationships with a few dear friends, and ones that I actively work on.

Like my high school best friend who once told me I intimidated her. Because while I still don’t totally understand it, her comment has constantly pushed me to think about how others see me and think about how I make others feel, which means I try to leave them feeling happy.

Like the former family member who is still somewhat a part of my family, and taught me so much about relationships by watching the failure of one of hers. Some of the things I have learned by watching that relationship evolve over time, continue to shape me today.

So today, one week after we’re all supposed to look around and be thankful for what we have, I think it’s only reasonable to also be thankful for what I don’t have….because I think I got the better end of the deal. A few times over.

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