Gratitude Day 1: People who keep me in check

Today, I’m thankful for people who keep me in check.  People who call me on my BS.  People who “keep me humble.”  People who remind me that I’m human and have flaws.  You get the point.

Today, as a result of the intro article for this project, my Aunt Bonnie responded to my Facebook post with this:

AB: “I have a challenge for you. Instead of just counting the blessings of your very fortunate life, challenge yourself to return that blessing by doing something that will make someone else add you to their blessings list. Just a thought – from someone who thinks too much.”

Yes, I felt a little slapped on the wrist (though it could be that I’m oversensitive).  “Hey!” I thought.  “I do stuff for other people all the time!”  I spent five hours yesterday volunteering.  I tell people how special they are to me.  I usually try to donate money when my friends ask on behalf of their causes.  I’m generally courteous and friendly and make the world better than I found it.

But you know what?  She’s right.  I could do better.  We all could do better.  Because the places that I volunteer are the places it’s easy and safe to volunteer.  The people that I tell that I love them are the people that I know will return it.  And I donate money and items here and there to causes, but I haven’t really picked one and given a sizeable contribution of time or money.  These are the tough things that need to be done.  And I’m not doing them, yet.  Yes, it is scary to go outside my boundaries to get dirty, to take risks, to support the unsupported.  I need a push sometimes to do the things that are tough to do.  And I need someone to call me out on that when I’m being complacent.

Although some friends and family are able to tell me that “enough is not enough yet” there are also those friends and family that tell me that “enough is enough.”  Basically, I am appreciative of the people that tell me to get over myself and get on with it.  My dear friends are the ones who are able to do this with such grace and ease, and I am so thankful.  They remind me that everyone goes through this, or that a situation isn’t about me.  They make me realize that there are people with much bigger problems, and I am not one of them.  They keep it real.

So here’s to you, Aunt Bonnie (and many others in my family) for keeping me in check and making me a better person.  And a major Thank You to friends that have spent time building wells or teaching basic health care abroad in the Peace Corps, educating our own children for little paychecks, or spending time in post-disaster areas trying to make the situation better.  I thank you for showing me that enough is not enough.  And thanks to my sweet friends who remind me that life goes on and although things seem important now, in a month/year I will look back on this and laugh.  And I usually do.

  1. #1 by Bonnie Belk on November 2, 2010 - 7:53 am

    Sometimes the little helps turn out to be the most valuable. My suggestion wasn’t a reprimand – just a reminder that a little internal calculus on the give-receive spectrum helps keep us balanced. And balance is what keeps us sane. IT also brings happiness we never expected.

    As the outspoken Aunt Bonnie, I am very proud of you – and I want nothing more than for you to be happy!

    Love you,

  2. #2 by Megan on November 2, 2010 - 3:15 pm

    Reminders are great, and also appreciated! Thanks Aunt Bonnie! Love you, too.

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