When you sit down to celebrate Thanksgiving next week and it's time to count your blessings, don't forget to include your very biggest blessing of all. This blessing is often overlooked, but it's time to recognize it for what it is. What is this blessing, you ask?
I'm referring to the person in your life who's gotten you this far, the one who's carried you over the hump when you thought you couldn't do it and wanted to wimp out.
Don't recognize who this is? I'll give you another clue.
I'm talking about the one who's stayed up nights with you when you were under the weather or three sheets to the wind. It's the one who's put up with your smallness all the times you've forgotten who you really are.
No, it's not your mother, although she's right up there on the list. Here's another clue:
I'm referring to the one who's stood by you when you were afraid and told yourself "I can't do this," and reminded you ,"yes you can, yes you are, and yes you will".
Figured it out yet? No, it's not your spouse or significant other, although I'm sure they're at the top of the list as well. Need another clue?
I'm talking about the one who may be the only person on the planet who knows whether or not you're telling the truth. This is the same one who will politely and sometimes impatiently nudge you in the direction of honesty when you're tempted to sell out for what seems like the more comfortable path to take.
I mean the one who always remembers your birthdays and anniversaries; the one who knows exactly what you like and don't like, want and don't want. The one who knows just how you like your salad; dressing on the side, or how you like your steak cooked, medium-rare, nice and pink in the center, please.
Ponder how great it is to know there's someone who knows you inside out and upside down and still shows up everyday to greet you in the morning when you wake up.
Even though you take this one for granted, this one's loyalty to you is never shaken. This one's love for you is constant, even when you don't give love back. Consider this one, often overlooked, as you search your soul for what you're grateful for this Thanksgiving and beyond.
This is the one who's animated your life, brought you to the fullness of joy and laughter and the emptiness of sorrow and loss. Without these experiences, both the happy and sad ones, you wouldn't know the full capacity of what it means to be human.
This is the one who is taking you to your future. This is the one who can see limitless possibilities ahead when you can only see a narrow path. This is the one who nudges you in the direction of the road not taken. Ever wonder where your courage came from? Look no further than this one. This is the one who conjures up your courage when you thought you'd plumb run out.
Got It Yet?
I know you have it now. Who else could it be besides You? OK, it is you! But I'm not referring to your personality, or the acquired, conditioned self you've become in order to survive. I'm talking about your higher self, the one who brings you face to face with truth, wisdom, wholeness and holiness. I'm talking about the one who knows. Give thanks for this one.
When was the last time you stood in front of the mirror and acknowledged yourself for being the most amazing human being on the planet? Sounds a little too crazy for you? When was the last time you recognized yourself as the unique, one-of-a-kind, never-to-be-repeated event in the universe? Still can't get with it? Maybe a little more self-love in your cup will give you more to share with others with plenty left over for you.
When was the last time you told yourself , "Thank you for choosing me to be your constant companion. Thank you for getting me through the hard times and for bringing me good times too." And if you really want to stack the deck, try thanking you in advance, for creating the life of your dreams. Nothing will rev up your manifestation skills more powerfully than expressing gratitude in advance for the goodness already on its way.
Go ahead! Pile it on! This you knows no limits. This one lives in the realm of all possibilities and for this one, what you desire is already so and it's just waiting for you to call it forth. So call it forth!
And don't play small. This one came to play big. This one came to live large, yet leave a small footprint. This one came to have its heart broken-open and leave it that way forever so it can hold more love.
This one came to have you see the world and yourself in it, as inextricably linked, part and parcel of the one, the whole. This one knows that who you are is all of it and all of it is you.
Give thanks for this one. Give thanks that your body has gotten the job done and commit yourself to honoring it more fully from now on. Give thanks that your mind, while sometimes seeming on the verge of leaving the building, is still clear and sharp enough to convey what's in your heart. And give thanks that your heart, still beats 60-90 times per minute and that over a lifetime will beat over 2 trillion times.
Give thanks that your spirit connects you with realms of glory and that your soul grounds you here on earth.
Give thanks for y-o-u. It might not sound like the politically correct thing to do. Do it anyway. Start a new trend. Others will follow. Watch and see. All the other "you's" at the table will recognize an opportune moment this Thanksgiving to give voice to their own sweet, precious this ones when it's time to chalk up what they're grateful for. It's not about tooting your own horn or inflating your ego. This is about recognizing the authentic greatness that is at the very core of who you are.
Imagine a world where everyone in it was deeply grateful for who they were. How could that not produce more love? How could that not produce more peace and joy? If everyone is standing in "I am grateful for me", how could we not then see our own greatness reflected back by everyone around us?
Surely we'd see that we're not greater than anyone else. We'd see that everyone has this greatness within. Perhaps standing in your own greatness would serve as a nudge for others to take up residency in theirs.
So this Thanksgiving and beyond, consider the gift you are. And while you're at it, make a commitment to truly honor this gift, to listen to its wisdom, to treat it with kindness, love and respect for the rest of your days.
And when your days here are over, this one will ferry you back from whence you came, a constant companion in eternity.
I'm giving thanks for you and for the connections we've forged over the past two years here at this watering hole on the Huffington Post. And I'm giving thanks in advance, that in the year ahead, you and I will continue to meet here and engage in lively conversations that will inform and inspire us.
Please feel free to leave a comment and share what you're grateful for about yourself. Consider it practice for next Thursday!
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I'll be away from this post for the next two weeks, so I'm wishing you a joyous Thanksgiving in advance and many blessings on the path.