Ten Things of Thankful 160 (Too privileged for words) #10Thankful

“Don’t you feel as though this week has just flown by?”

I looked up slowly, allowing the question to percolate alongside the knowledge, like a sudden slap, that WonderAunty’s week has clearly been an other-end-of-the-spectrum experience from mine. Chin still in hand, fingers dangling in my book to keep my place, I watched her whizz around Doing Things. “No,” I eventually ventured, “it’s been a really really long week – it’s felt like every minute has dragged itself by on its knees.”

She looked at me quizzically, still amidst the flurry of her simultaneous tasks. “Really? Mine has gone VROOM!”

I finished my book and sat for several long minutes, just staring into space, my gaze landing idly on the things of the breakfast room – photographs of family members past and present; art hanging on the walls; orchids blooming on the windowsills – and having come to absolutely no conclusion about anything, I pulled a recently-extinguished candle towards me and began coating my fingertips with the melty wax, watching it turn to smooth, unpolished blobs of build-up, before ‘popping’ them off, back into the candle in thin, petal-like curls embellished with some of the whorls and whirls which show my identity.

I picked one up and looked at it, studying the lines within the tiny, waxy cup. No thoughts struck me. No inspiration hit. My mind seemed to be stuck on a white-noise channel in the face of almost too much to say about the week, the state of the world, the state of myself…

I showered, irritated by the need to wipe drips off everything at the end (knowing, though, that it’s good housekeeping and helps immeasurably with keeping things nice), and slightly peeved about the faff of needing to shower when I’m only going to go to the gym tomorrow and need to shower again. I dried myself carelessly, vaguely wondering how I always manage to forget to dry my feet, before wishing that I’d organised myself into buying another bottle of that nice coconutty, not-tested-on-animals, after-shower-body-moisturising stuff I had before. It’s been run out for a week and I’ve left it, because it’s a bit more expensive than I’d normally buy, and I resent spending money on me when I’d rather save for Murica.

Pyjama’d, I ran a quick review of my unfeasably long week and wondered what the hell I was going to write about – what on earth I’d say when I’ve been feeling as though my ‘voice’ might have dried up to nothing, and as though the only thing I seem half able to write these days (or, should I say, the only thing I write which seems to gather much interest (and that because it’s part of a link-up, and visiting around is polite)) is half-hearted attempts at finding the thankfuls in my life, and share them in ways which don’t make readers wish they’d spent their time poking themselves in the eye with a stick, instead.

Too privileged for words - summat2thinkon.wordpress.com

There were points which stood out, sure:

There was the awkward, determinedly light-hearted chat with a bearded healthcare assistant about goodness-knows-what, while the doctor did whatever it was he needed to do at the hinder end of me, as my internal monologue chuntered “They do this all the time, there’s no need to be embarrassed, it’s just a medical procedure, it doesn’t even matter, this is just their everyday work, it’s fine, it’s probably not as bad as some of their other patients’…” Followed by the relief and concern of knowing that yes, further surgery would be necessary, but not until autumn, and this might FIX things…but also might indicate that a third surgery would be necessary, and then…no, perhaps America in November might be a bit ambitious and need pushing back.

There was the triumph of submitting my first college assignment…and then the immediate loss of impetus, coupled with a hazy determination to do something more with it at the weekend.

There was the pleasure and pain of getting back to a 12kg kettlebell workout, then the humiliation and appreciation of a chap interrupting to demonstrate how squats *should* be done, so they’re safe (turns out I’ve been doing it wrong for years.)

There was the momentary elation of receiving a $10 honourary judge’s award for a poem I submitted to a competition, and the ensuing, settling realisation of what a really, really small deal this was, in the grand scheme of things.

There was the excitement and furore of being able to shout out loud that my amazing best friend has been awarded a BlogHer Voice of the Year for her #BeReal series, and the accompanying small voice (probably in the backs of the minds of all writers who weren’t picked, or weren’t nominated) suggesting that if I’d ever written anything worthwhile, it could have been me. I was just grateful my envy was mitigated by the fact SHE won, because of her wonderful series, and because I nominated her (the small voice then suggested perhaps this was because I’d do anything for a bit of the limelight, and pondered at length on what an attention-seeker I am.)

There was the middle-of-the-night creeping annoyance of small-boy knees dug into my hips, and not-so-small-boy-sounding snores rasping across the pillow at me, followed later by a sudden wail from the top bunk, which was a small-girl nightmare that needed Grandma, because Aunties are a bit more peripheral, a bit less capable at dealing with nighttime monsters.

There was gritted-teeth professionalism of dealing with a Very Grumpy Woman, who seemed utterly determined to be displeased at everything, from the get-go, and whose constant instructions to her husband to “write that down as well”, for a letter of complaint about the entirety of the service she was offered, from point of invitation onwards, had me struggling to keep my cool as I tried to remember that her expressions of anger and disgust weren’t about me, and were about very real-for-her experiences and feelings.

There was the laugh from my friend on the adjacent exercise bike, as she admonished me not to fall asleep, and remarked that she could tell I was tired if she was going faster than I was. My retort back was quashed by a yawn as I leaned forwards into the difficult bit, my aching legs desperately trying to keep spinning at (what I deemed) a reasonable pace, as the tiredness felt as though it was creeping bone deep and further, into my soul.

There was the banal necessity of grocery shopping, picking fruits and veggies and cans of beans and trying to remember that when I go to America I won’t be able to afford as much as I do now, and the knowledge that this, at least, might help me shift the extra pounds which seem to stubbornly adhere to places I’d rather they didn’t.

Then there was this – the snuggled-in-blanket, here-we-are-again attempt at writing a list of thankfuls, wondering at the ways in which I find myself so ready to complain about my life, when really, each of those moments represents a luxury, an absolute fucking PRIVILEGE. Privileges which are denied to so many on the basis of so many things which are just ‘how they are’, and so many things which are absolutely unfair and not at all how they should be.

The privileges of family, home, warm water, good healthcare, access to education, access to stuff to keep me fit, the luxury of poetry, the wonder of excitement about a friend’s success, the complex cherishings of kids, the having of a stable job, of being healthy, of having friends, of having food, of having the time and space to whinge about them all…privileges which I absolutely take for granted altogether too much of the time.

Privileges which, this week, have been permanently taken from very much too many people. Brown people. Black people. White people.

People whose most basic gift of all – life – was taken from them, horribly, tragically, by those who seek to promote awfulness in this world.

And this world, this aching world, this hurting, breaking, fracturing world, needs people of privilege to stop whining and start doing. To love, in the face of all that goes on, because the only thing which can overcome the horror of it all, somehow, is people, everywhere, every day, living love, doing love, in big ways and small ways and all ways.

I am thankful now, more than ever, to know my purpose.

In the evening of our life we shall be judged by our loving - St John of the Cross


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43 thoughts on “Ten Things of Thankful 160 (Too privileged for words) #10Thankful

  1. Sweet Lizzi, this is such a content, run-of-the-mill (NOT meant as an insult, NOT talking about the caliber of your writing) post that it made me happy. Being so absent and so very stuck inside myself, coming here and reading this tonight, I was struck by how different the tone of this post is from what you wrote when I first met you. Met you online, that is. I am happy for you, even for your daily annoyances, because overall, life seems pretty good. And I am eager to hear (pay attention) to your latest updates on your life and the process of coming to ‘Murica. And I will try not to be so stuck inside myself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I do miss you but it sounds as though you’ve had SO MUCH going on! Good grief! What a time it’s been for you!

      There are really no updates, which is a shame. The permission (pre-visa application) process is at the beginning and I haven’t been appraised as to where it’s at, so who knows. I just hope it doesn’t all fall through!

      There is a HUGE difference in the tone of my posts. Thank goodness. Though I know complacency and things being ‘okay’ has led to not-so-good things just by my lesser involvement and engagement.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. When so much sadness and horribleness is in the news, we need to focus on good things. We can’t get trapped in the idea that the world is terrible and there is no hope. There is good. So much of it. This ttot is proof of it. Seems I don’t write more than ttot posts these days either, and even those I’m not as good about getting it done every week. Seems many of us are feeling the same way.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes. Maybe just one of those swings of the pendulum kind of things…I dunno 😦 I worry about it, then I see things which give me hope, and I think “okay maybe it will be alright…”


  3. I’ve been trying to keep my head and hands busy this week to keep depression at bay. I can’t even begin to deal with the problems of the world, as they push me deeper into the abyss. I’m thankful I’m feeling much better today than I felt a week ago — my house is relatively organized and clean, there is good for me food in the food and pantry, and I’m addressing my finances. Action always helps me feel more focused and not as hopeless.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhhh you’re doing VERY well then, my friend! So much achievement! And especially when you’re trying to stave off depression as well – I think you get ‘double points’ for that.

      It’s so tough to try to even contemplate the stuff that goes on, when our own minds are stacked against us. I hope you’re out the other side soon *HUGS*


  4. “my ‘voice’ might have dried up to nothing, and as though the only thing I seem half able to write … is half-hearted attempts at finding the thankfuls in my life.”

    This, my dear, just described me completely. Right now, doing anything just feels like an effort and a waste of getting out of bed for.

    But – you got your first college assignment in – that’s big. Bigger than big. Go you! And you achieve, every single day, by being the person that you are that draws others close. And you articulate your grumps so much better than I have. xxx

    I have to go, I have a passive aggressive groucho bag in the kitchen clearly making emptying the dishwasher into a martyrdom. *sigh, deep breath, move forward*

    Liked by 1 person

    • Oh good grief…that martyrdom thing is something which very rapidly sends me over the edge. Or used to, when I had to deal with it. I hope you were able to keep your cool, and that your intervention and Very Clearly Doing Helping Out was accepted as ‘good wifeing’ and that the rest of your evening’s gone well.

      I’m glad you ‘get’ where I’m at with this writing thing, and I’m sorry you’re there too. Hopefully when we meet, that will give us something concrete to write about, but…there’s months til then! Augh!

      Second assignment today (well, part 1 of a 10 hour one (eeeek!)). We’re all getting there, slowly, I think. I hope!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. This, my lovely rose, is just what I needed to read today. Whenever you write, it feels like I’m sitting across from you with a cup of tea and your beautiful voice landing on my ears.
    You captured the week’s woes in the most graceful and gracious of ways. Indeed we have so many things to be thankful for. Thank you, as always, for your gentle reminder.
    Do you have any idea how special you are? Very, very, very.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You just made my evening a bazillion times better, lovely lady – I so needed to hear that. I wish we *were* across from each other with a cup of tea (chamomile, here), and that we could have a good ol’ sit-down natter.

      This week has hurt my heart so much *sigh* I’m not used to it. I feel as though I’ve lost touch. These thankfuls…I’m just rolling in luxuries I don’t even see, and I’m a little horrified at my own blindness. I’m glad you found them graceful though…that’s a relief.

      There are always *always* things to be thankful for. And no…never 😉 But thank you so much for thinking so ❤ ❤ That you say it is one of the things which makes YOU so special ❤ ❤

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Nothing like the hate and fear and aggression in the world to turn our thoughts to gratitude and love and hope. I’m delighted you have blooming orchids on the windowsill. Mine get new leaves but I haven’t had a new flower in over a year. (I need to do some Googling). I’m impressed with the 12KG kettle bells. (over 26 pounds – I Googled It). Even your writing about lack of inspiration is inspiring. Love you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hm. Do you feed your orchids? (I only ask because I had to yell at Niece and Neff today for playing around with orchid drip-feeder food vials near the tills at the garden shop, so I know they exist.)

      And thank you! It’s nice to know you like what I write even when it’s writing about not knowing how or what to write 😉 And REALLY! That’s some heavy weights! I didn’t know it in lb! Yowzer.

      Also…I think the more of us who are willing to turn our attitudes to thankfulness and sharing and celebrating one another’s weeks, and building community…so much the very better!


  7. when the observation occurs to me (as it does to anyone and everyone participating in a grat blog such as the TToT) that I can’t come up with anything appropriate, I remember back when you started doing this 10 things, thing. And I remind myself that you wrote the gratitude posts by yourself, back when you would get 3 maybe 4 comments on a post.
    That still impresses me.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. But you do have that “moment of elation”. It’s yours. Always. What a great feeling, huh?
    How lovely reading your post. A beautiful word weave today, Lizzi.
    Um…kettlebells? Serious gym stuff. They look too hard for me to ever try lol. I’ll leave them to you kids. I’ll stick to good old fashioned dumbells 🙂
    Taking a shower is such a drag sometimes, eh? Totally get where you’re coming from 😀


  9. I relate to so much of this. I totally agree about the tiredness of the soul feeling, but also about how we who know so many types of privilege can and must work hard to heal this fractured world.
    That part about the white noise channel is what is going on in my head lately, but I also understand those feelings of envy, that writers are quite accustomed to. I try so hard to squash them.
    I am truly happy for Hasty and her recognition of #BeReal because it has been such a necessary project. I am honoured to have been a part of it, twice.
    And finally…that part about poking out one’s eye…can’t say I relate to this. I may not have much sight in my right eye, but what little I still do have I would rather not ruin by the act of poking it. And, as for my left, poking would no doubt result in it falling out, as it is artificial and all. I am even so cautious as to when it comes to rubbing my eyes. That’s how much I hate it when it comes out.
    loved your words this week.


  10. I really love the quote you use at the end. We are of like minds and hearts again this week.
    Also, I am very proud of you for keeping clear on the fact that you were not the true intended target or cause of what made the Very Grumpy Lady so grumpy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ohhh THANK YOU May! The quote is a gorgeous one. I read it cited in a novel last week and absolutely fell in love with it, and it’s SO where I’m at.

      As for the Very Grumpy Lady…it was difficult but obviously she was going through a lot and her ire (in spadefuls) was about other things, but just happened to come out at me, sideways, because I happened to be there, representing some of the things which had upset her. Still. It wasn’t pleasant, and…if I’m honest I felt quite pleased with myself that I was able to NOT rise to it in the moment, even though I grumped about it afterwards.


  11. Yes well what can I say except Amen? The wrong people have guns. Well who are the ‘right’ people? There aren’t any. Long live mundane things to be grumpy about. And RIP everyone who was in the wrong place at the wrong time with some very wrong people at the wrong end of a gun. ☹️

    Liked by 1 person

    • Absolutely. It SO frustrates me because ANYONE having ‘the biggest stick’ just means everyone tries to get a bigger one and people get hurt. I wish people would stop trying to be the toughest, and find ways to be more connected to the humanity in each other.

      RIP to all those people, on the wrong end of guns, of bombs, of hatred *sigh* This world. This WORLD! It’s heartbreaking.


    • I look forward to hearing them, most definitely. I like your thoughts.

      And in response to your reply to my comment on your SSS, YES you should make it for real.


  12. I think I’ve told you this before but once, I was complaining about something to my dad and realized I was complaining and said something about how it wasn’t cool to be as others have it so much worse and he said something like that the fact others suffer more doesn’t actually lessen our own experience in suffering/being sad, etc.
    Also I wouldn’t have bothered showering if I was going to the gym again tomorrow but that’s me and I’m kinda gross that way. And look at you finding so much thankful in there.

    Liked by 1 person

    • No, and your dad’s right – other people having it worse doesn’t undermine or negate our own suffering (though I’m not sure what I experienced really counted as ‘suffering’ per se, more…background-level annoyances at life) but I do think that it’s useful, especially in a week like the one the world’s just had, to keep perspective. I’m a lot guilty of that – of blinkering myself to see entirely through my own eyes without considering other peoples’ points of view or how THEY experience things…and then it’s like a smack in the face from reality to realise that no, I’m not the centre of the universe, and EVERYONE has a lot going on, and probably everyone has a lot to be pissed about and also a lot to be thankful for. Just, I guess, some peoples things that make them pissy are more…euchhhh…valid? than others.

      Also I wouldn’t have bothered showering if I had showered the day before 😉


  13. When I saw #BeReal feature, honored, I felt so honored to have been part of a series that is a platform for greatness.

    Privilege does not negate our need to whine. It is only part of our basic human need. To whine, to be heard even if just by ourselves. We are allowed, even when the chaos of the world is failing apart. It keeps life moving regardless. Even if it seems small in this moment of time. Always remember that.

    I cried and was angry and hurt and yet, I still did my nails and laughed at my baby who yelled hooray over chicken and fries… because life carries on whether we want it to or not. I whined over my sinus pressure and the heat and the joint pain that comes on because I indulged in chocolate cake- because that is human of me. I cried at a photo of a Muslim woman shading a white man with the American flag, because that photo was emotional and beautiful. Because we are human we go through degrees of emotions throughout the day and that my Sparkle, is okay- no matter what the world outside our bubbles look like, we are allowed. I heart you!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you ❤ I just feel as though my world has shrunk to the size of my own bubble, and my ego has swelled to fill it, and I'm unable to see beyond the end of my own nose, at this stage.

      The photo you describe sounds beautiful! Where did you see it?

      And…I guess you're right. This world keeps moving. Our lives keep moving. The only constant is change, and we just keep rolling and we need to make the best of it. We need to love each other more and better, every day, all of us *sigh*


      • Our bubbles are always small, Sparkle, and when our own egos expand, remember that your personal bubble can expand as well as retract when needed. Fill it, then release it. Just don’t burst it. Or allow others to invade, contaminate, or pierce your bubble. Just keep it moving. I will find the photo again and share it. It was beautiful.

        Liked by 1 person

        • I SAW IT! I SAW IT ON YOUR TIMELINE and yes…it was so moving. Such a beautiful moment caught on film 😀 I’m glad you shared it.

          And…I guess we all have to keep our bubbles going. It would be a mess if we let them burst, but I guess I’m trying to figure out how much of my bubble I need to be okay with being filled with me, and how much I should (hate that word and its inherent sense of obligation, though perhaps here it *is* about taking responsibility) encourage it to be filled with other people.


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