As I began writing this post, I started humming the Bing Crosby tune from the movie Holiday Inn (one of my favorites):
I’ve got plenty to be thankful for
I haven’t got a great big yacht to sail from shore to shore
Still I’ve got plenty to be thankful for…
It goes on and on, but you get the gist. And no, I won’t sing it for any of my friends. They know why (can you say “tone deaf”?).
Today, I’m thinking a lot about what I’m thankful for. It comes down to these five things:
1. The ability to finally live in my truth.
It was the toughest thing I ever did to start writing this blog. It was also the best. Since I’ve been able to freely talk about my past in scientology, I’m so much happier with myself. I realized recently that the reason I was so hard on myself before and not able to forgive myself, was because I was frustrated with my secretive state. No longer. I have no more issues with myself, other than the ones everyone has (wink wink).
2. My incredible family, both actual and chosen.
My family has been my rock throughout the past few years, and I appreciate them more now than ever. This includes, of course, the wonderful family I was born into. We may not always agree on everything, but we’re always there for each other. We don’t HAVE to love each other so much, but we do.
It also very much includes my chosen family, starting with the wonderful husband I never imagined I’d have. His love and support have sustained me. Oh, and there’s my fur family: Sammie, Stella, Sadie, and Sid. They’re crazy, messy, and needy, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
Then there are my friends who are family. I don’t know how I got so lucky as to be surrounded by so many wonderful, smart, kind, generous, supportive people, but I’m forever grateful that they chose me too.
3. A job which, while it’s about to end, actually PAYS me.
I spent so many years working for nothing that it still sometimes amazes me that I get paid to work. That may sound crazy, but it’s not—I get paid more in one week now than I got paid in a year when I was in the sea org. I’m not kidding. Sometimes I forget these things, you know, when I have to pay bills or I want to buy something that I can’t afford yet. Then I have to stop myself and say, “REALLY Anne? It wasn’t so long ago that you couldn’t buy ANYTHING.” So yep, I’m grateful.
4. My writing career, which is about to go into hyperdrive.
With the end of my store comes the beginning of a full-time writing career. It’s something I never dared dream would happen, but it’s definitely happening. There will be content. There will be books. There will be all manner of fantastic opportunities. I have a lot of things in the works that I can’t start until I’m done with the store at the end of December. But when that ends, the fun begins! It’s a pretty phenomenal way to enter a new year, I’ll tell you.
If you’d told me a few years ago that I’d be doing this–writing for a living–I’d have said HELL NO. Having been recruited for the sea org as a writer, and having written 18 hours a day for the better part of 15 years, I never thought I’d ever want to write again. Every time I tried, it would just bring up too much pain. But I pushed through all that and I’m heading into the future with a renewed purpose. Writing is all I ever wanted to do from the time I could put a pen to paper. Now I’m doing it.
One more thing: I’m thankful to you for reading this blog and coming along with me on my journey. Sorry I’ve been a bit absent lately, but I promise I’ll make up for it in spades in 2020.
It fills my heart to know that you’re out there reading this and that you find it valuable. That’s all I could ever ask for.