Tag Archives: Thankfulness

Thumbs Rule

Recently, I discovered my thumb.

Well, I always was a late bloomer.

Seriously, I learned afresh this odd appendage accomplishes far more than catching rides.

My breakthrough resulted from a nutritious lifestyle. While slicing veggies, I sliced the tip of my right thumb.

I hate the sight of blood — especially mine — so I won’t describe the gory scene. Once the bleeding finally stopped, I sought bandages. Ours were antiques. Though left-handed, I couldn’t open the packaging, let alone apply the BAND-AID®.

Hubby to the rescue. However, the old BAND-AIDs® wrinkled, crinkled, then stuck only to his thumbs.

“When did you buy these? During the Depression?”

“Why should I buy BAND-AIDs®, anyway?” I retorted. “Aren’t you the doctor around here?”

Hubby tossed the latest attempt into the trash and turned back to his computer. “Actually … I’ve retired.”

Hmm. I could a) press this paper towel on my thumb for a week; b) go to the ER; or c) be nice. Though distasteful, the last option appeared simpler. And cheaper.

A few “pretty pleases” later, he had sealed a BAND-AID® over my thumb.

Now, I could return to my regularly scheduled program.

Nope. My thumb yelled in pain when I typed.

Didyouknowspacebarsareveryimportant?Andthethumbthatpressesit?

I couldn’t turn a key without blood. My wimpy fingers pressed the remote in vain. Couldn’t open a medication bottle. All because of a cut on my thumb.

I soon was to discover more tasks it had performed for years without complaint. Joining socks. Turning pages. Tying shoes.

I tried to persuade my index and middle fingers to work together to zip my coat.

Why, when I was left-handed, did this mess with my life?

I discussed the issue with Left Hand, soliciting more help until Right Hand healed.

Lefty, however, turned thumbs-down: “I’m good for writing. For feeding you. For six decades, I’ve covered the important stuff. If you think I’ll unscrew saltshakers and insert earrings, too, you’re nuts.”

So the week continued, with cooking, showering and playing euchre more complicated than advanced robotics.

Lefty, Righty, and I tried not to vent our aggravations on Hubby, who extended a frequent helping hand.

My thumb is mending. Recently, I inserted earrings without stabbing my ears. Or jugular.

Soon, I will return to life as usual.

Disabled veterans, minus more than a thumb, will not. Neither will my friend with multiple sclerosis and her husband. With a faith in Christ that staggers me, they daily invent new ways to cope.

I discovered my thumb this week. Overall, did the experience reap dividends?

I think so. Gratitude is priceless.

Though Righty took the hit, she agrees.

And even Lefty gives it a thumbs-up.

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: Have you rediscovered a reason to be thankful?

Weird Things for Which I Am Thankful

Winter, like an obnoxious relative, blew in early in Indiana and now threatens to stay forever. When we have to shovel snow within days of Halloween, our backs and arms ache too much to assume a posture of gratitude. But I will exercise some Thanksgiving muscle.

Me being me, though, most of my reasons for gratitude sound a little weird. Nevertheless, I am thankful for:

Aisle signs in parking lots. I usually disregard them, but when I do memorize my car’s location and actually find it after shopping, I experience a real rush — and sweet sense of superiority to wandering souls who set off car alarms to find theirs.

Deep purple hand towels. They defy even my grandchildren’s noblest efforts to stain them.

Piano tuners. As much as I loathe off-key music, my very bones scream when a piano tuner pounds and adjusts my keys. As tuners possess sensitive ears, too, I salute their bravery in attacking enemy tones.

Flatware. That the majority of the 330,044,724 people in the U.S. advocate the use of forks and spoons, as opposed to sporks.

For television. Within minutes of flicking the remote, some lauded, lunatic sports figure or pubescent program convinces me I am actually pretty sane.

Black olives, a time-honored flavor fetish in our family. My children and grandchildren share my taste for them on pizza, though my son-in-law attempted to teach his toddler the little black things were bugs. Grandma’s DNA prevailed (Ha!), and I am thankful for descendants who are fellow olive-eaters.

Mugs. Especially those that, when clasped by left-handed people, display a design as pretty as the one right-handers see.

Pennies. They are such generous little coins, willing to make a small difference whenever necessary. Plus, a fistful of them still gives me a vestige of that billionaire feeling I savored as a child, carrying them to Charlie’s General Store to exchange for a sucker-bubblegum-Pixy-Stix® feast.

Greeting cards. The ones that do not need extra postage because of wordiness.

My big, ugly, rubber boots. They are best buddies whether mudding through the garden or wading through snow.

Hundred-calorie bags of popcorn.

Rear window heaters and wipers.

People who spell my name without apostrophes.

Winds that blow our leaves into other people’s yards.

Expired calendars that abound in my purse, office and on my refrigerator. They remind me of: A. sweet memories; B. moments of misery endured (whew!); and that life, whether A or B, is precious and passes swiftly.

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: This Thanksgiving, what weird things do you appreciate?

Gripes vs. Gratitude

Do you enjoy a good gripe?

Me, too. The recent election itches like a mosquito bite. I scratch and complain as if that will make it all better.

Maybe, as Mom often said, I should leave it alone so it will heal?

Better yet, applying something soothing — like gratitude — speeds the process. Even …

Gratitude for Weird Things

For example, I’m thankful pumpkins don’t grow on trees. Falling pumpkins every autumn would prove traumatic. Messier to rake, too.

I’m thankful for Indianapolis International Airport shuttle buses. Even when passengers can’t remember in which state they landed — let alone, parking row numbers — drivers remain courteous and coherent. Which is more than I am at midnight.

As we’re discussing air travel, I give thanks for screaming babies. They make me grateful to be old.

Not too old, though, to appreciate new bell bottoms for which I paid $4.80. Retro fashion, retro price! The only down side: the last time I wore bell bottoms, I didn’t, um, possess one.

Still thinking retro, I’m grateful I no longer endure home permanents or soup-can curlers.

I’m thankful, too, that unlike my first year of driving (two wrecks), I have driven accident-free for years.

I remind myself to give thanks at stoplights for drivers with honking disease. They strip away any religious façade: Will I swear or pray?

So far, prayers way outnumber swear words — though a few prayers have consisted of, “Lord, strike that guy’s battery dead.”

Oops. My “gratitude” is beginning to itch.

Changing the subject … I am grateful for Britisher Thomas Hancock (1786-1865), who invented elastic. At Thanksgiving, real waistlines might prove fatal.

I am incredibly thankful for my favorite Thanksgiving foods: pie, pie and pie! I’m also blessed with my sweet mother-in-law, a wonderful pie baker. And my kind father-in-law.

Also, my funny, ornery, 91-year-old dad. When I phone, he always answers, “Rachael who?” As long as he doesn’t turn polite, I don’t worry.

Speaking of near and dear, I should express gratitude that my love is not a vampire. Or zombie. Just a camper. Though some friends would rather deal with the other alternatives, I’m happy with my guy. Among other considerations, he pumps gas, even if I’m driving. Always.

I’m also thankful that as empty nesters, we no longer must be good examples. Feet on the furniture, supper in front of TV, yelling at referees — life together is good.

Fortunately, our children and their spouses are good examples. They have given us seven awesome grandkids who have taught us peace and quiet are highly overrated.

We are so thankful. When I think of those blessings and a gazillion more …

What gripes?

 

Your Extraordinary Ordinary: What reasons for gratitude help dissolve your gripes?