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  • Writer's pictureeschaden

51 & Holding...

Today is my minutes from now the actual time I was born. See I have always been a 4:30 girl...

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone! That being the more important event today. Do not get me wrong, I am super grateful to be here...although I might have answered that differently a few days ago...

Since my birthday and Thanksgiving (my favorite holiday) coincide this year, I thought I would share what I am thankful for:

My parents being healthy and safe during the pandemic and that I still have them both in my life.

My children being healthy and relatively happy. That they both live with me and I get to be a sober mom to them. That they have never (God willing) seen me drunk. For the love I get and give to them and from them every single day.

The Tribe of beautiful women who I love with all that I am. Who hold me, support me, love me and trust me. I am so very grateful to each one of you.

Elizabeth - your friendship over the past year has been such a gift. I am so grateful for our walks, our talks and for the shared love of reading and writing.

Lane - thank you for coming back into my life. Thank you for loving me and for being the amazing man you are.

Randy - thank you for your friendship and for being my big brother. I love you and am so very grateful you are in my life.

Paul - thank you for your friendship and love. Thank you for sharing your butterfly with me. You inspire me and make me laugh...a rare combination.

Maria - thank you for helping and joining this crazy family of mine. Thank you for your perseverance, love and humor. I love you.

Deanna - thank you for your support, hard work and love. I would be lost without you.

Greg & Penny - thank you for taking a chance on me and trusting me with all that you do. I am so very grateful to have the opportunity to build this business with you.

My co-workers - thank you for all you do. For your hard work, dedication and support. Thank you for making the whole place work and still be a fun place to do so...even in a pandemic.

Clients - thank you for trusting us to guide you through a very hard and dark time.

My animals - for loving me and providing me such comfort and love. I can only hope that I provide the same to you.

Katie C. - for your timely friendship, support and love.

Katie M. - for your lifelong friendship and trust.

AA - for saving my life and giving me a life that is worth living.

Dalis - for your love and support and friendship. Thank you for helping me see my life in new ways and for hanging in there with me while I try to do the new things I see.

Ojai - for living in this most beautiful and safe valley. For being able to raise my kids here and to reside in a place where I feel cared for, part of and blessed to be a part of...

My home - for the beautiful space we have created together. For being blessed to own this little slice of heaven.

Health - I am so very grateful to be Corona free today. To have weathered this pandemic and to be healthy.

My friends - there are too many of you to name individually. But I love you all and am so very grateful to you. Thank you for being my friend.

Christina - Thank you for still being here and for your friendship, love and support. I love you so very much and am so proud of you!

Tricia & Jochen - thank you for the 11 years of friendship, love and support. Thank you for walking this very hard and sometimes tragic parenting path with me. Thank you for always understanding me even when I didn’t understand myself. I truly would be lost without your guidance, love and support!

Patrick, Karl and all my DC Friends - thank you for helping me get to 51. Thank you for giving me such an amazing foundation in life, in friendship and love.

Tom - Thank you for gifting me with our most amazing children and for working with me to do our best by them no matter what!

Justin & Christine - for being such great examples of perseverance and love. Thank you for showing me that success looks different than I thought and it really is about how you love and who you love rather than what you possess. Christine, I am so very sorry for your loss. He will forever be in my mind, laughing and saying something horrifically insightful while being likely inappropriate. He woke me up and I am forever grateful.

Teachers - my children’s and mine. All of them, even the ones that I didn’t like all that much or really think they had anything to teach me. Thank you to all the teachers here in Ojai, working so hard to provide an education in this most difficult time.

Therapists past, present and future - thank you for affording me a chance at a new way of living and loving. Thank you for helping me make it to 51 and to have that look the way it does.

My Higher Power - I have greatly questioned your judgment over the past few days. This week was a little much. But thank you for giving the perspective of my turn. It has been my turn for hardship this past week but thank you for showing me that no matter how much I hurt, it can always be worse. That pain is proof that I am still here, blessed to be among the living.

Patrick - Thank you for being the most amazing gift. I am so very grateful to you and for you.

Bob - Thank you for being an enduring friend. I am very grateful to you.

A wise woman said to me recently, “perhaps maybe you need to really experience gratitude...”

This last week has been especially hard for me, emotionally, physically and spiritually. However, the result of all that hardship has been a most amazing experience of gratitude. A feeling of being grateful for the mess, the conflict, the sad, the happy, the hard, the joy, the pain. I am grateful for it all...because it has shown me that I am alive and here and I get to do this thing called life. And that means that I still have a chance to do better, to be better, to love better. I am going to keep trying while I hope to recognize that life, especially this year, is truly the most amazing thing I have ever been given. My gift back is what I choose to do with it...

If I forgot to mention you, or failed to give you adequate credit for the joy you have brought to my life, please forgive lack of naming is not an indication of how very much I appreciate you...

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