Saying Goodbye

I realize this is usually something people absolutely dread.  I even know a few people that refuse to say those words.  While those situations where these words are applicable are never fun, there is something to be grateful for.  

The way I see it, if you dread saying goodbye, that means you care about the person.  It means you made a connection and you valued their presence.

It may mean that they were a great worker or simply a great friend, but whatever the case may be, their leaving is going to leave a void in your life.

I have had times where I really wasn’t too sad about leaving, and as I look back that is actually a much sadder situation.  To have spent any significant amount of time somewhere and not be sad about leaving means that there were no great connections.  

People are the best part of life so what a shame if we missed out on an opportunity to connect with people in a new area.

As a military member saying goodbye is a regular occurrence, though it doesn’t make it any easier.  But what it does is make you grateful for all of the amazing people you get to meet.  That’s why tonight I am grateful for saying goodbye.

What are you grateful for?

Good People

I feel like I talk in this general vein a lot on here, but I also feel like it cannot be overstated.  With all of the crap that is going on in the world, and all the terrible things people do to each other, we can never have too much talk about good people.  The awesome thing is, they are everywhere.

I’m sure many of you can relate, but in the last week I have had multiple friends pick me up and drop me off as I got repair work done on my car.  I was invited to a friend’s for dinner because not only did they want to help get me out of the house, but they enjoy my company, and the chili was amazing.  I have been given three meals worth of food.  I have had great conversations about fun things.  I had a friend buy me a donut.

I know all of these are little things, but something else that I also can’t say too much, is that it is the little things that matter most.  We will never be able to do great things if we don’t take the time to do the little things.  

That is what makes good people so valuable.  They are not perfect, and they don’t do things for recognition, but they do the little things because that is just how you should treat people. 

I realize I have been somewhat vague in this post rather than calling out individuals, who definitely deserve credit, but I am just letting my heart run with it tonight.  

If you aren’t a good person then stop being a loser and fix it.  If you are a good person I thank you for your your efforts, and tonight I am thankful for you.

What are you thankful for?

My Neighbor Linda

I got home from the gym tonight only to realize that I was out of milk, and that the store would be closed before I could get back to the other side of base.  Since I actually need milk I bit the bullet and drove over to the gas station to by some.  Since it was getting later and I didn’t want to cook I took advantage of the Subway in the gas station.

Upon arriving home, and before I could even get out of my car, I heard someone say, “Did you eat dinner yet?”  This was my wonderful neighbor Linda, and when I came around the back of my car she was standing there in her apron staring at me with some concern in her eyes.

Linda has been my kids’ psuedo-grandma while we have been in Japan.  She spoils them with treats whenever they ask, and she is incapable of telling my little Hannah no.  She is also a fantastic cook, and even mows my lawn because she says she finds it therapeutic and that I better not take that away from her.

In response to her question I held up my Subway bag to which she responded with rolled eyes.  She then proceeded to go back into her house and return with BBQ pulled pork and rolls for me to eat for dinner or lunch, or whenever I wanted.  About a week ago she showed up at my house with a mint chocolate chip ice cream pie.

While I am perfectly capable of taking care of myself, it is so comforting to know that there is someone else looking out for me since my wife is not around to do so.  She really is the sweetest lady in the whole world, and our family’s life will be a little less happy without her in it.

She will never see this post since she doesn’t use social media, but that does not make my gratitude for her any less sincere.  She has been a blessing of unbelievable value for me and my family, and that is why today I am grateful for my amazing neighbor Linda.

What are you grateful for?

Friends That are Honest

Life is full of so many choices and decisions that can often be quite challenging.  In many cases we know people that have had to make similar decisions and they can be our greatest asset.

In conjunction with yesterday’s post I reached out to a couple of friends to get their opinion of the situation and their advice was invaluable with helping me decide what I should pursue.  It would have been easy for them to simply affirm my thoughts but they were willing to give me honest answers instead.

Only time will tell if I have made the right decision, but either way I am glad I have some friends like that.  I have not always been so lucky and had to deal with a lot of pain and frustration because of it.

I get that it can be hard to be bold and honest with someone who seems to have already made up their mind but it is our responsibility as good friends to do so.  In one particular situation in my past, a lot of people had the chance to be honest and talk some sense into me, but not a single person said a thing, and I suffered pretty hard later.

The more set someone’s mind is the more challenging it can be to be honest with them, but I am grateful for my friends that are honest with me in order to help me make the right decisions in my life.

What are you grateful for?

Great Neighbors

We were a little bit uncertain what it would be like living on base when we came to Japan, and honestly we still have some mixed feelings.  The one thing that we could not have asked for better is our neighbors.

From the day we moved in the have been so wonderful helping us in every way.  Despite the fact that I really enjoy yardwork, I haven’t had to do much here because they always beat me to mowing the grass and even taking the leaves.  

Most of our neighbors have teenage kids who have been great babysitters whenever we have needed them.  It is super nice to have literally six different babysitters in the same parking lot.

Today, not for the first time, they gave us eggs and milk to finish a recipe that I miscalculated on.  I know that is a little thing, but it has been one little thing after another for two years now.

With my family’s impending departure this week it has been really hard to say goodbye to them, but I am super grateful that we have had such amazing neighbors.