I was up early this morning to do something I do not normally do. I made cookies for one of my classes. I shuffled sleepily into the kitchen. It is finals week, and I am oh so tired. Everyone else in the house was snoozing away, the mixer swishing, the coffee dripping, and the varoompf of the gas oven kicking in were the only sounds floating in the air. The kitchen floor was cold. Although it took quite some time to arrive, it is winter here. I forgot my slippers in the bedroom, but braved the cold to not wake an already over stressed and over tired husband. I made a mental note to leave him a few Snickerdoodles, his favorite. These were the first cookies I ever baked for him. I am sure this is when he fell in love.
I turned on the retro style stereo I received a few birthdays ago and tuned to my favorite radio station, KSMU. They, those with the perfect, smooth radio voices, were sharing the news of the day, the news of the world. There isn’t much down time in my life. There is not much time to sit back and take stock of the condition of this world. This saddens me. My seemingly indifference is not a reflection of how I think about the place in which we live as much as it is a reflection of how my life is right now, in this moment, and in this space I reside as wife, mother, daughter, sister, teacher, and friend. A space I value. A space I love. But this morning, in the light of a night kitchen, in my bare feet, in my apron, I listened and became aware of some thankfulness I need to write about. This morning, I realized I am thankful for many things. The following list is but a glimpse of what the news of the world made me think about.
I am thankful for living in a country of which I have no desire to defect from.

I am thankful for a good job in a bad economy. Because so many are out of work, I am working more than ever.

I am thankful for a good benefits package and am aware that if I lost my job, I would not be able to afford healthcare. My students suffer because of the cost of healthcare. The young will not grow old if they ignore illness in order to prevent a doctor or hospital bill. They endure.

I am thankful for my students. I don’t think they know, that I know, that life is hard for them. I do know guys. I do.

I am thankful for heating bills and gas bills because it means we are warm and we are where we are supposed to be when we are supposed to be there. I only wish we had a car with better gas mileage and more insulation in the walls, but I am thankful for the car and the walls nonetheless.

 I am thankful for the teachers in our lives that help us show our children the value of owning knowledge and the power of thinking well.

There is so much more. I showed up to class with Snickerdoodles in a white oak basket, a Christmas bow in my hair while sporting my vintage apron. They didn’t seem surprised.

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