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I know gratitude can not actually be taught, it must come from the heart. But, with two little girls, ages 3 and 5, I am trying to teach them to think about things that they are happy for. Every evening I ask them 3 things they are grateful for. Why 3 you ask…well being 3 and 5 you often hear things like ” I am thankful for unicorns, rainbows and butterflies!” It is perfect and wonderful to be thankful for those things! The things they are grateful for often makes me stop and be more grateful in my own heart. But, every now and then they will say something like “I am thankful for my family. I am thankful for my sister. I am thankful for talking to grandma on the phone today.” Those are the things that come from deep within the heart, the things that will make hard days down the line easier for them to get through and that is the things I am trying to teach.

You see, we can be grateful in any situation. Think about it, the small things that we take for granted, waking up in the morning and breathing, hearing birds sign, seeing a sunset, talking a walk with your best friend. Some people don’t have those abilities. Some of the most grateful people I have met are those that are suffering the worst. My friend, who was diagnosed brain cancer this Christmas,  lives life to it’s fullest and is the most upbeat and positive person I know. When he comes into work, he walks by my desk , we say good morning and I ask ‘how you doing?’ and his reply is “Alive and grateful, alive and grateful!” Now if that doesn’t make you take pause then I am not sure what will! Think about it…

 

So, being grateful for unicorns, rainbows an butterflies IS actually something to be grateful for!  I know everyday even though I may not say it out loud I am grateful for them and grateful for my children allowing me to share in gratitude through their beautiful eyes and hearts! They, in return, have taught me the true meaning of gratitude.  Amazing right?!

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