Observations and Thankfulness

A young girl, no older than 8, wrapped in berets, uniform blues, and goodness - crossing a hectic road in a not-so-safe part of town on her way to school. I asked God to watch over her travels and thanked Him in the next breath that my daughter never has to worry about such. I also tried to imagine that little 8 year-olds back story: Is mom at work, working 2 jobs? Is dad around, is he alive? Is she happy? Does she get good grades? Can she recognize the bad guys, how to sidestep danger, how to run like FloJo if she needs too……

At Meijer’s, about 12am, a young woman, 25 wearing 45 badly, dressed in a hairnet, jogging pants, and an old Piston’s championship shirt. This woman; who looks more like she needs to be in bed rather than the grocery store has 3 small children with her, begging for everything their little eyes see. Her cart is full – milk, cereal, cheese, crackers, cookies, lunch meat etc. My common sense tells me that these kids should not be out this late and these kids should be getting sleep for tomorrow school’s day because that’s where my kids are. Again – I’m thankful that this is not a reality that my wife has to deal with.

I know it’s not polite or kind to look at other’s and say, “Glad that’s not me.” But there is nothing wrong with understanding that there are a lot of children and adults that have unfortunate realties that others don’t. A lot of times – I find myself frustrated with reaching my goals, not having enough money, or maybe my photo business is not where is should be. Sometimes I’m so hard on myself that I get depressed. But then I look at my quality of life. I look at my children who have the opportunity to be just “children.” They carry no burdens, no extra responsibility above their age, no extra stress – they get to be just “children.” I look at my wife – who gets to be a mother without having to do it all by herself. Whose main concern is the wellness of our children and not how pay the bills are going to be paid. This is comforting to me and makes my life full of happiness and thankfulness even when I’m finding flaws in so much else.

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