Tag Archives: gratitude

When you’re down, and troubled, and you need a helping hand…

I am such a fortunate bunny.
In my life, I’ve had the chance to meet several of what I would call “Kindred Spirits” – the old Anne of Green Gables kind, those folks who get you and support you without question but also with wisdom, who dare to tell you they think you are on a wrong path but are willing to support your choice to follow it anyway.
It’s highly splendiferous.
I’ve chatted with a few of them over the past days and I am endlessly grateful for them.

And then there are those friends you meet through writing and reading.
I’ve spent the last few days immersed in Louise Penny‘s wonderful “A Trick of the Light”. I adore her mysteries, set in Three Pines. The characters are all so human, the stories gripping, yes, but it’s the development of the characters in them that makes for the type of book that you sigh at when you reach the end.
Louise Penny has a blog, too, where she talks about her challenges and triumphs as a writer, and in there, her humanity and humility shines as well. I haven’t ever had a chance to chat with Louise, but it remains one of my fondest hopes to do so one day. Poor lass. There are probably hundreds more like me. (Oh my gosh, she’s the very same age as me! Now I feel like I had better get busy!)

What was interesting was that this book was about infighting in the art world, about dirty tricks played by artist and critic and gallery owner.

I have to say, in my sojourns in the writing world, I haven’t found this sort of enmity. Writers that I meet are surprisingly supportive and charming and willing to help and gosh darn it, just nice people. I feel like I’ve joined some cozy fraternity where we all wish for one another’s success.

Well, mostly. I do hear mumblings against Dan Brown and 50 Shades, and there is envy and Schadenfreude and all that stuff, but it seems far less than I’ve experienced almost anywhere else and mostly in me when I can’t get my muse to get off her lounging bottom and help.

Given that we spend so much time alone, maybe it’s simply that we crave company when we get it? Or maybe we truly wish for success for everyone, in the hopes that more books and good books raises the level for all of us.

In any case, this week I’ve had cause to feel grateful for friends near and far, close and more distant, new and old.

I humbly thank you all.


It was my birthday yesterday and the very best part of it was having a chance to reconnect with friends far and near, chat with them briefly or longer, hear about their lives. I spent the day smiling thinking about my past lives, the people I’d met there, and the joy they bring to my current life. It was a glorious snowy day that caused me to be cozied up inside with only brief forays out to watch Chutney the dog leap about in the snow like a cat with wrapping paper. I wallowed in my friends instead of the snow.

Early on, I heard from a former “significant other”, who remains significant to this day. We met the first week of university, spent so many silly times together – will I ever forget the Boston Cream Pie fiasco? We lost track of each other, then reconnected a couple of years later. It was … incendiary … I spent days enclosed by a mist of lust and longing and total addlement. We reconnected again a while ago, briefly. It was … incendiary! Again! Plus friendly and loving and caring and completely unexpected and thrilling. And yet innocent. I can’t help smiling thinking about it. So, what does it mean? Soulmates? Oddly attuned pheromones? Shared love of the muppets? Who knows. All I know now is that somewhere on the planet there’s a star that shines, that warms my heart. We’re unlikely ever to reconnect again in a physical way, but our friendship remains solid, warming, and comforting. I am so grateful for it.

Then, later in the day, my girlfriends checked in. A wonderful group of women, my gang of ladies who lunch, who circle around my sis-in-law-once-removed, and who welcomed me in, arms open, despite my ungratefully divorcing my ex. When I lived in Ottawa, we’d visit once monthly for a lingering lunch of conversation and support and affection. I miss them so much.

My nursing buddy called. We’ve been friends since I arrived at Queen’s, we suffered nursing school together, she saw me through disastrous boyfriends, drunken evenings, vicious nursing profs. She’s been far more successful than I have – she leads her field. I am agog at her accomplishments and so thrilled at her continued friendship with her peripatetic friend.

Many other wonderful wishes came my way throughout the day, from old friends and new. I can’t tell you how much these mean to me, as I perch on the edge of the continent and look back in gratitude for the life I’ve lived so far. How lucky I’ve been! From high school buddies to new friends, from cousins to sisters to kids to loves, my life has been and continues to be so very rich.

It heartens me, braces me to step forward, heart open, arms open, to embrace the future. My humble thanks to you all.