Thursday, November 28, 2019

Seven Reasons

They say that practicing gratitude can rewire your brain. I can’t vouch for this personally because I haven’t been practicing enough of it. The world we live in is more conducive to a cycle of reactive horror. The alternative, trying to put your head down and “just get by” is doable but exhausting. I suspect that most of us are simply doing the best we can.

The true history of Thanksgiving is not what we were taught in school. I can’t celebrate that old lie anymore. I can try to use the day to stop, refocus, and think on the many reasons I have to be grateful. Any advice my readers have for turning this into an actual daily practice is welcome. In the meantime:

Village Green/Town² Seven reasons to be thankful, 2019

1. Our amazing library system. They truly never stop looking for ways to connect, serve, and inspire. And a shout out to friend of the blog Mickey Gomez for her election to Board Chair of the Friends of the Library. Will Mickey’s love of music, dogs, and craft beer translate into themes for future library events? We’ll see.

2. My Village, Oakland Mills, especially Sandy Cederbaum and our OMCA staff and our board chair Jonathan Edelson. They just don’t quit. Their work as positive, community-building advocates is a big part of why Oakland Mills is hOMe for me and my family.

3. Cured/18th & 21st for their commitment to local nonprofits by making their space available for so many fundraising events. They haven’t been here long but they are already making a name for themselves as reliable community partners.

4. Howard County teachers. I may not have a kid in the schools anymore but I’m still intensely aware of their daily commitment to our community’s children. Amid the drama of redistricting they have kept their eye on what matters most and they’ll have to keep doing that as changes are made and families adjust. And they spend more money out of their own pockets and donate more hours than you will ever, ever know.

5. Nina Basu and the folks at Merriweather Park at Symphony Woods for making good on living the mission of a park for everyone. I continue to be impressed by the variety of events, the deliberate outreach to underserved communities, the partnerships with other area non-profits, and the commitment to providing free and/or low cost programming. They are proving that arts experiences can be engaging, diverse, and accessible. And they are continuing to build a park at the same time.

6. Bonnie Bricker and her team of volunteers at Talk With Me. With a determination to revolutionize outcomes for infants and children by training parents and caregivers in simple techniques that foster and enhance language development, Bonnie is truly changing the world one relationship at a time. It is vitally important work that has long term consequences for every child.

7. My readers. Every day that you stop by is a day I am not merely over here talking to myself. I appreciate your ideas and thoughtful comments over on Facebook. I started blogging when it was still quite the happening thing to do and, given the short lifespan of many things in our modern world, I appear to be trudging on like a dinosaur in a world that has moved on largely to podcasts and instagram. Funny how that works. I’m grateful you are along for the ride.

Have a wonderful Thanksgiving, however you spend your day. I hope you have much to be thankful for.

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