If you’ve been paying attention you’ll remember that my wife and I have a fairly aggressive stance when it comes to holidays. Most of them are bullshit designed to sell products and make people feel like shit, and the ones that we DO love (mostly Christmas & Thanksgiving) don’t even get the traditional treatment from us.
Here he goes again with this holiday shit.
Nope, Thanksgiving in our house has NOTHING to do with fucking Pilgrims cause those lying bastards royally fucked over the Native Americans who lived here LONG before them. Also, since we’re not Christian, there isn’t a whole lot of “Jesus’s BDay” talk because we’re not in it for the religion, or the historical lies (it’s essentially impossible Dec. 25th was actually the kid’s birthday, if he ever existed in the first place- NO, TANGENT AVERTED!), or really even the presents.
We love this time of year for the very small handful of people we get to share it with. It’s snuggles on the couch with our kids, a fire and a lit tree glowing in the living room, it’s the second AND THIRD trees glowing all over the rest of the house (in case you hadn’t noticed, we kinda love the shit out of Christmas), it’s ordering pizza on Christmas Eve cause FUCK cooking a turkey AGAIN. It’s have some time to just BE, and to be together.
We even put our phones down occasionally!
It’s also about being thankful for who we are, what we have, and where we’ve been. In fact, my wife and I have a New Year’s Eve tradition where we go out for lunch and just reflect on the year we had and where we want to see the next one. We get centered as a family, we eat a fuck ton of carbohydrates, and we wear motherfucking sweatpants. Seeing a pattern yet?
We don’t do shit like everyone else, and we like it that way. One thing the holidays are about, fairly universally, is gratitude. Being thankful for what you have. Gratitude is central to nearly every teaching that involves self-improvement in some way, and especially in recovery programs. If you’re grateful for what you have, you’re not out doing crazy shit to get stuff you DON’T have. If you’re grateful for the people in your life, you won’t take them for granted and/or screw them over. If you’re grateful for the life you’ve been given then your heart is in the right place to do great things with it.
That shit can be tough to catch in a jar though, cause we live in a world that gets darker by the fucking day. Hop on the internet for 5 minutes and you’ll see more despair, more violence, and more awful human degradation and disgust than you can shake one of your precious fucking guns at. It’s tough just being a PERSON in 2019, so finding your way to gratitude can be a daunting task to say the least.
I’m grateful that our President only WANTS to be a fascist dictator, instead of actually BEING one. Is this the bar we’re setting, really?!
So, since it’s Thanksgiving and we’ve all got the holidays on our minds, I thought I’d share a short-ish list of the things I’M grateful for. Maybe you’re having a hard time finding yours, maybe you’ve been through some rough shit this year, and maybe you just don’t give a fuck about trying to find a silver lining in this desolate world. I get it, I’ve been there, and shit- I have things I want to fix in my life too. All I know, is that when I keep my heart and my mind in a place of gratitude vs. a place of bitterness, I sleep a little better and everything feels a little less hopeless. So in the spirit of holiday togetherness and all that crap, here you go:
AFHGhost1’s Gratitude List (in no particular order)
- I’m grateful a million times over for my wife. She is the love of my life, the mother of my children, and my best friend. There was a time I had no idea what the next chapter of my life would look like, or if I even cared much about it at all, and then she showed up. I am VERY well aware that I am extremely lucky to have wound up with her, and I wish it for everyone in the world to find theirs too.
- My children, my two little maniacs, and the sweetest little creatures on two legs. My daughter is strong willed, fiercely independent, and the most beautiful little girl I’ve ever seen. More importantly, she’s beautiful on the inside too and she is kind, caring, and goofy as hell too. My son, the most adorable little boy in the world. The snuggliest kid ever, with his Disney eyes and his “I’m gonna hold your face while I look into your eyes” moments that make my black little heart sing. he is strong, loyal, and everything I hope for in a little boy.
- The opportunity to be a father at all. My father checked out because I was born and I’ve spent my entire life dealing with it in some way. For me to be able to give my children a present, and loving father is one of the greatest gifts I’ve been given. I’m also grateful for the opportunity to keep trying to be better every day. It turns out I don’t have quite as much patience for toddler behavior” as I thought, and I tend to get frustrated a lot easier than my saint of a wife Thing is though, every day I get to be there to try and get better, and that’s huge. Anxiety doesn’t help, but I’m a work in progress. We are ALL works in progress.
- I’m grateful for my mother, who (outside of my wife) has been the only human person in my entire life to ever fully support me and let me be me. There were plenty of times she probably shouldn’t have, but she stuck by me when the rest of the world said “no thanks” and I love my mother more than anything in the whole world that I didn’t make or marry.
- I’m grateful for our ability to have a house, a place our kids can call home, a place they can feel safe, and a place they can grow up. They’ll probably think it’s boring as fuck growing up in one place, but my wife and I grew up in relative chaos so providing stability is important to us, even if the kids won’t FULLY appreciate it. We were extremely lucky to end up with the house we are in, we’ve done a lot to it with a lot to go, and it feel like our home. We are very fortunate to have it and not a moment goes by that I’m not aware of that fact.
- I’m grateful that we are currently gainfully employed and able to take care of our shit. We have shit to pay off, and plenty of goals to attain, but our heads are above water and I’m very appreciative that we’re hanging in there. My heart bleeds for those who are not.
- I’m extremely grateful for The Ghost Generation, and the opportunity to build a dream that has been in my spirit (in some form or another) my whole life. Having the opportunity to take a stab at building my OWN thing and getting out of the fucking rat race is exhilirating, I love every second of the hard work it takes to get something like this off the ground, and if I’m lucky enough to do what I hope to do with this the victory will taste VASTLY more sweet because I will have achieved it on my own. With the love and support of my wife, my kids, and you guys of course! Maybe I’m crazy, but being able to create like this, with my heart fully on my sleeve for all to see, brings me such a feeling of wonder- because I know so many of you feel the same way. I’m just grateful to have MY turn to be heard I guess.
- I’m also grateful for creativity in general. The fact that I can pick up a guitar, put pen to paper, enjoy a video game, appreciate a movie, devour a book, draw shitty stick figures- whatever. Creativity is where I FIT, and knowing that is the gateway to freedom. I don’t fit all that well in “their” world, I’d rather make my own.
- I’m grateful for the people we have in our life that we care about. It’s an admittedly short list, but it’s a good one. I’m trying not to fucking veer into greeting card territory here, but love really IS pretty much all you need. Stop making puke sounds, you know I’m right asshole.
See- once you get started it ends up being hard to stop. All you gotta do is get yourself in the mindset of gratitude and it grows like a fucking virus. It’s wonderfully infectious and I could probably go all day right now, but I won’t! Since we all have turkey to eat and drunk uncles to argue with, I figured I’d keep it brief. I covered the big ones, and I’ll leave you to your festivities in a second. Please remember, my wonderful Ghosties, that you’re not alone in your struggles. This world is FUCKED up, and the only reason I’m able to have those things I’m grateful for is because I put in the work, my wife puts in the work, and we do our best to appreciate every second that we can. If your list feels shorter than you want it to, my only advice is this- Go fucking get it. I know, I know, “its not that easy!”. Well, it kinda is.
Showing up is half the battle. Maybe even 75%. Most people don’t care enough to even TRY. Don’t be one of them, ever.
There’s something that is said in recovery programs that applies to all of us, addict or not. “Do the next right thing”. If you just do the next right thing at all times, and take steps to get to the place you want to be, everything feels a little less shitty. It’s not always easy, but every single thing we do is a choice and we just gotta do our best to keep moving forward in the right way so as to serve our ultimate goals. Start small, take out the fuckin’ trash! Put something other than pocket fuzz in the Salvation Army bucket this year! Don’t tell that telemarketer to go fuck themselves! Read the instructions, make the call, go for the interview, hug the friend, start the business- just fucking DO SHIT. Make moves, hustle on, and follow the rules my household lives by- Don’t be a dick, and don’t be an idiot. Its essentially “do the next right thing” with different words for god’s sake.
It’s not known around the world JUST yet, but my wife makes the best turkey in the universe. We’rs also having a Chocolate Mousse & Marshmallow Pie that the Food Network seems to think is BONKERS delicious so I’m getting pretty excited and I’m gonna go now. Elastic pants are calling my name, and probably yours too. remember to appreciate the good, maybe stay away from the fucking news for a couple days, and enjoy whatever bit of wonderful you can. If times are tough and you need to talk and/or vent- [email protected] is where you can reach me, I’m always talking about how you’re not alone and I’m happy to prove it. Or, use that Comments section that nobody seems to give a shit about! Either way, thank you for supporting The Ghost Generation and my crazy dreams- you are appreciated beyond measure now let’s go eat CAAAAARRRRBS!
A brand new blog/website where this happily married, 30-something father of 2 little minions rants, raves, and speaks in tongues. Raw, honest, and riddled with profanity. Get on board and let’s make The Ghost Generation awesome together! www.theghostgeneration.com Twitter.com/Gh0stGeneration