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Two Sides of a Thankful Heart

And in the blink of an eye, winter is upon us.

Intense much, Kristen?

No, I’m simply embracing the fact that I more often than not find myself subconsciously shivering when I look outside, crowded my entryway with an ensemble of three ominous winter coats and a pair of hiking boots, and exist under three layers despite the comfort of the consistent 72° household in which I live by the light of my already decorated Christmas tree.

As you may have already guessed, winter doesn’t really settle well with me.

To be frank, I cannot wait until the day I can earn the title of snowbird and retreat to warmer temperatures for a few months until the cold clears up.

However, it doesn’t seem so incredibly frigid outside when I think about the countless days of family, celebration, and joy this season brings. The holidays always seem to arrive just at the right time, catching a bittersweet heart off guard and planting a fresh seed of thankfulness.

However, a season so prominent can revive memories and emotions that we would rather repress, too. Seasonal depression—whether in the form of inadequacy, loneliness, loss, or anxiety—is a reality that is often magnified by a tendency to sweep it all under our box of Christmas decorations until it all implodes.

To be truly thankful is an incredible feat, sometimes.

To have a genuine spirit of generosity, even more so.

I have never experienced more joy in a human being than I saw in my grandma—she could charm a cashier on their very last hour of their final shift into fits of laughter at the drop of a pin. My grandma didn’t claim to be a comedian, in fact, half of her jokes weren’t even intentional—she just had a way with people.

The Christmas season, a time filled with family and marked with cheer, was a time in which my grandma undoubtedly thrived. She adored giving gifts, eating Christmas cookies, putting up her tiny tree, and just about any festive activity you could dream up.

This time of year, I see hints of my grandma everywhere.

There’s always two sides of being thankful.

If you’ve struggling through this season, then a sweet, quiet afternoon filled with a book and a coffee can mean much more than it appears to.

I’m thankful for the new: a year of celebration, change, growth, and blessings.

I’m also thankful for the pieces I have left behind of family in friends, from those who I simply lost touch with, whom I feel just a bit closer to during the holidays.

I’m looking forward to every party, family gathering, Christmas carol, and well wish this holiday.

Instead of listing all the things I’m thankful for, I’m curious as to what you’ve been up to lately.

My heart has been full, and I’ve been rediscovering my inner-child as I sift through new stories, new characters, and new places to write into my music.

But what have you been up to recently? I would so much enjoy any news you have to share in the comment section! Leave a note and I'll be sure to reply.

If you're traveling this week, have a safe trip and enjoy the weekend!

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