Living a Life of Gratitude

One of my recent goals in is to live a life of gratitude. I want to live like this no matter what is going on in my life. I am so thankful for everything that I have in my life. Living a life of gratitude proves that I know this. 

I am especially thankful for little family. One of my life’s greatest blessings. Both Nic and I come from broken homes. His happened in childhood. Although my parents didn’t officially divorce until I was in college there were always issues throughout the years. My siblings and I experienced things in life that I don’t believe children should have to see.

I know my parents did the best that they could. I also believe that with each new generation we learn a little more than the generations before us. It’s what makes the human race worth continuing.

Building Family Bonds

One thing that I am eternally grateful for is knowing that no matter what Nic and I may go through we will never put our children in the middle of our issues. We will always show respect towards one another. Our kids will always feel safe and they will always know that we love them and each other. I am so thankful for the bond that we have as a family. It is so strong and it will never be broken. We are each other’s priorities and we show it through our actions and our words.

Like any marriage, Nic and I have had our struggles. This shift in perspective, however this goal to live a life of gratitude, makes me realize how fortunate I am. Fortunate to have someone who shares my values and wants to spend the rest of his life with me in creating and preserving this beautiful family that we’ve built. What is more amazing than that? When I look at the bigger picture, I realize that my tendency to be so nit-picky about everything is silly.

Change Your Perspective

When you grow up with a skewed view of the world — that it’s a cruel place, everyone is out to get you, and happiness is not the norm — it’s hard to grow out of those beliefs. I’ve realized that life isn’t necessarily the way I was taught growing up. I am most grateful that I’ve come to this realization. It hasn’t been easy, but I’ve already started to truly change my perspective on life and I’m so thankful for that.

In the Hmong culture, you don’t hear the words “I love you” growing up. You’re just supposed to know that your parents love you. When American society has the opposite expectation, it can be confusing for a first-generation child. As I got older I realized that my parents did love me, but I had very real doubts as a child.

Hope for the Future

My hope for my children is that they will never question or doubt my love for them. That doesn’t mean constantly being spoiled. It means that they know in their hearts, no matter how old they are, that everything we do, we do out of love. It also means that the words “I love you” easily flow from our hearts and out of our mouths. Usually, my kids will say “I love you” only when we say it to them first. A couple of weeks ago, Quinn and I were playing and laughing. Out of the blue he says “I love you mom”. With no prompt, and no indication that I was going to say it. It just came out so naturally from him. I will never forget that feeling and I am so grateful for it.

That feeling is why I will live a life of gratitude. If all that we have left at the end of the day is the very real love and support of other human beings, what more do we truly need? No matter how our stories may have started, or what we may have experienced as children, if we have love and support from others, we have to realize that we are blessed beyond belief. Living a life of gratitude shows that we know this. 

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