Practicing Gratitude

My mom always said that there were a lot of people out there who struggle with the holidays. How sad for them, I thought.  I look forward to the holidays. As it turns out, I am one of those people who struggle through the holidays.

It turns out that the holidays shine light on the barren lonely parts of my psyche. Ghosts from the past remind me of my own loss.  I am slowly learning to honor that pain. My therapist recently mentioned a book in which the characters tithe pain and suffering to create magic. That rings true for me. So I am learning that holidays are a time when I must honor those threadbare parts of my soul.  As I know my pain and darkness intimately, I become more empowered and creative. 

I have had great things happen in my life this year. Immense changes. I feel lucky. I am not naturally positive. I am a recovering perfectionist. So it is important for me to reflect on the good things in my life. I created this gratitude mandala last week, and my family has been slowly filling it up. My heart is also filling up with each additional item listed on our mandala. 

Archer, my two year old daughter told us she is grateful for the colors red, yellow, and purple. She is grateful for cheese and sandboxes. Her best friend is grateful for dolphins. Nothing can fill your heart quite like the gratitude of a 2 year old. 

Click on this image to get your free printable gratitude mandala.

Click on this image to get your free printable gratitude mandala.

I bet you are busy. I know I am. I still have to go shopping. And clean the house.  I wanted to give you a blank gratitude mandala of your own to fill up since you may not have time to paint and photoshop one yourself.  I hope you too can honor the threadbare parts of your soul, as well as the bountiful blessings in your life.