“These are the times that try men’s souls.”  Thomas Paine

Those are pearls of wisdom from 18th Century political activist Thomas Paine and are a reaction to life’s curveballs. Life’s challenges do test the spirit, and if tough enough, can make or break who you are.

Trials. You can’t live with them. You can’t live without them either. I can’t say, in all honesty, that I appreciate them; they are emotionally exhausting, and I wish, sometimes sorely, that there were other ways to learn Life’s lessons.

But I have to admit that they bring the benefits of a healthy emotional workout when you manage to get through them. I cannot say that I am grateful for them without sounding hypocritical, but I can give them full credit for pushing me beyond my boundaries and being responsible for giving me some semblance of maturity.

And this is what I am doing today. I acknowledge, fully, the trials that I have encountered this week. When I came out of the week sane, I realized what emotional barbells they are. Of course, I acknowledge the good that happened this week as well.

I prefer to get the negative news out of the way before broaching the positive, so I begin by being thankful for the downsides of this week.

I met a few blogging pitfalls this week, what with a client reneging on payment and making unreasonable demands.  While I cannot honestly say “Kumbaya” that it happened, I do appreciate that it taught me a lesson in patience, and perhaps focus.

On the subject of concentration, there are my memory and attention difficulties, which accompanied my brain tumor removals. I have always ranked this among the trials in life which are hard to appreciate but do so for the resilience they bring.

Then, there was my Schnauzer Misty’s CLD (Chronic Liver Disease).  Her enlarged liver caused her breathing difficulties.  Apart from having to pay a humongous bill from the vet, I have had to change her diet. It means more time spent at the kitchen stove, but I am glad that my “marriage dog” of 15 years is hale and hearty. The situation was so dire that I almost had to choose to euthanize her, a choice every pet owner dreads.

Next, parents. Like all souls, they have their “off” days and have ways that sometimes cause my blood pressure levels to reach another astral plane. That said, they have never left me wanting for anything, and by all accounts, have always brought out the best in me.

Rainy days in tropical Singapore, no matter how dark, turn out sunny, and serene. Each thundercloud has an elusive silver lining, though you have to strain your eyes to see it. There are always the”ups” even if they appear blurry.

I am glad to have a background in English and Literature, which has helped a lot in writing. I find myself writing marketing articles most of the time,  and am thankful for language skills to tap on when I need an edge.

There is my husband, who is always an up. The man may have a short temper, but is frighteningly steadfast, and always has an eye out for others.  He is my sanity when I go nuts.

This list ends with writing clients who trust me enough to remain steadfast. I am thankful for them and the opportunities they have given me.

Life throws us both straight and curved balls. However they arrive, just play tennis.

Ten Things of Thankful
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