Like the rest of the northeast U.S., we are in the biggest blizzard Mainers have seen in decades. Outside, the snow is falling sideways in the gusty winds, and the parking lot and road are covered with two to three-foot drifts. My first and most grateful thought is that I am safe and warm and well-fed and still have electricity, (the town next door, and the smaller villages in the area often lose power for days.) While I give thanks for my good fortune, I bear in mind the many who are less fortunate than I am. I know this is the kind of storm in which people freeze to death for lack of shelter. I hope as few people as possible are in that precarious position.
This storm reminds me of the blizzards I experienced while living in Colorado. Out on the high prairie, the wind felt as though it blew from Saskatchewan, through the intermediate territory and states, and right across our little mini-farm on its way to Mexico. While it was snowing, only a fool would attempt to drive — I did so once and ended up stuck at a business called SpaceCom, out in the middle of nowhere. The people there were great hosts, and when the snow lessened enough to drive, we all went to Colorado Springs, where the company put us up in a very nice hotel. We spent the rest of the storm in the hot tub.
I am grateful, as well, that my family’s circumstances are similar to mine — none of us are looking for a place to escape the storm.
I am grateful for my continued good health, and the ease with which I have settled into an exercise regimen. I thank my friend Darreby: we are each serving as the other’s accountability buddy on projects we need to get done. I had a lucky encounter with my ex-endocrinologist’s wife, at the store yesterday, and she will be passing on my thanks for all the strides he helped me make over the last few years.
I am especially thankful that I am alive now, at the beginning of the 21st century, and not mired back a few centuries or decades ago. I understand the longing for the good old days, as experienced by people one or two generations older than I am. But I look around me, at modern medicine and my warm apartment, and at the comfort into which I’ve settled, with much gratitude. I know ups and downs will come, but I know now that they are manageable, as long as I stop trying to fix them all at once. That was an important lesson, and I’ll be learning it for the rest of my life.
Finally, I am grateful to the men and women I see out my living room window, plowing and plowing and plowing the snow, in order to keep the roads open in case of emergency. They have been at it all night, and they have a lot of work yet to do. Thanks to each one of them.
I am a very lucky woman, and I certainly can feel it this morning — I am hugely blessed with the best the universe has to offer me. For that, I give profound thanks.