The Letter of Gratitude

Backyard Maple

Our Back Yard Maple

What a quick rebirth this year of the trees and plants. I went up to Midland to surprise my mother for Mother’s Day and upon my return to London 2 days later I sensed that something was different. I was driving down the main road to our home and I finally realized what it was. In the 2 days I had been gone the leaves had burst forth. I was amazed that things had changed so quickly. Like a butterfly emerging from its cocoon. Especially surprising to me was the Nordic Maple in our backyard. I had mentioned in my last newsletter that it was late and that the buds were just forming. I thought it would be another 2 or 3 weeks before they would open. As I was heading out on my trip on Mother’s Day I thought that my estimate had been optimistic as progress seemed slower than I had anticipated. You can imagine my surprise when I returned 2 days later to see that many leaves had unraveled from their little shell. What a beautiful sight to see.

This wonderful tree has been a bone of contention for many years. My husband and every arbourist and landscaper who has been to our home thinks we should cut it down. The tree is messy as it drops lots of maple keys of which many try to start a little forest in our back yard. It is the last tree to drop its leaves in the fall which makes it a cold and huge job to be raking up the huge volume of leaves so late in the year. Some winters we get heavy rain or snow which makes it even more of a drudgery. When my husband grumbles and starts to complain I remind him of the benefits of the tree. The wonderful shade it provides on the patio and how that shade helps to keep the house cool. How the rustling of the wind at night lulls us to sleep and welcomes us to the new day. How lucky we are to have such a tall and beautiful tree among the other smaller trees in our own back yard. I also remind him how much I love the opportunity to do Reiki sessions and teach classes outside. The connection with nature during these times is so wonderful and really adds to the energy and grounding experience. Yesterday was the first outdoor session and I am looking forward to many more.

Taking a look at something such as our tree and focusing on the things for which we are grateful really helps us to work through those times when the going gets tough. Sometimes it is hard to think of the positive when we are working out in the cold and wet gathering up the proliferation of fallen leaves on the lawn. I admit that my husband does most of this work but I bring him out warm drinks and remind him of the great aspects of the tree. He grudgingly smiles and trudges on with the work at hand. I do know though that his mindset has changed to one of appreciation for the positive things that the tree does provide us.

I was recently listening to an interview with Dr. Bernie Seigel, renowned medical doctor and spiritual teacher. He was talking about gratitude and he had a rather unique idea for how he includes each day by using the alphabet and the date of the month. For each day of the month he takes the corresponding letter of the alphabet. Example 1st of the month is A, 2nd is B … 26 is Z. Using the letter of the alphabet he then says 3 things for which he is grateful.
I thought about this but then wondered about the 17th day of the month which would be the letter Q. Surprisingly it didn’t take long to come up with some gratitude statements.
• I am grateful for the quiet times so I can reflect and relax.
• I am grateful for those people around me who have a quick witt and make me laugh.
• I am grateful for my quirky friends who help me see things from a different perspective and help me realize that we are all a little quirky.
What about the extra days at the end of the month when there are no more letters of the alphabet? Those are like wild cards when you can go wild and be grateful for anything and everything. Of course you can do that on all of the other days too but also try and see how easy it is to come up with 3 things for the letter of the day.

The letter Z may be a bit of a challenge but I am sure we can come up with some great ones for that letter too. I think it would be fun to share our Letter of the Day Gratitude Statements with one another. Here is a link to my business facebook page . I am going to try (if web access if available while I am away) posting my 3 things for which I am grateful each day during the month of June. I welcome all of you to post your gratitude statements too. This can help us stay focused and help us make gratitude part of our daily routine. They say that doing something for 21 days makes it a habit. With 26 letters of the alphabet we should be more than on our way to having an Attitude of Gratitude. Please consider participating and I look forward to seeing your posts.
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