Friday, May 17, 2013


The last couple days have been a whirlwind of getting things done - work! gigs! job interviews! - and as a result, I feel like a piece of Kentucky Fried Chicken with a bite out of it.

However, I do want to take a breather and just reflect, for a moment, on the amazing relationships in my life. From the boyfriend who, this morning, texted me "READ THE NEWS" (he was talking about this news story, which 1. Blech and 2. I'll probably talk about that next week, because I have  thoughts on RoFo and his leadership "skills"), to my generous and thoughtful parents, to the best gal who went careening through No Thrills with me in a grocery shopping spree for ten people that included a lot of tortilla chips, to the sister to walked me halfway home last night and with whom I got to giggle over New Girl's excellent season finale, I am, for lack of a better word, blessed.

I tend to shy away from the blessed descriptor because it can feel like I've gone into a belief system that I don't subscribe to - Mormon housewives (and the blogs that parody them) and Christians hipsters often spout about blessed they are. To which I reply: yay for you, I guess. But if there's no benevolent deity in the sky, smiling down on me and granting me these little life moments, where does that leave me?

I've been reading Anne Lamott's new book Help Thanks Wow, and in her introduction, she stresses that her readers don't need to feel connected to, say, Jesus in order to feel blessed. She reminds us that feeling blessed can emanate from pretty much anywhere we choose we want to call it - for a while, she called blessing-giver Phil, after a street vendor failed to finish a bracelet with her favourite Philippians quote, but we can call ours whatever we want. Higher Power? Maybe HP for short? Sure. The Goddess? Okay! Even "the great unnameable force that acts for goodness in the world," although that handle is a bit unwieldy.

I don't know what I would call mine, but I do know that I feel blessed when I get to see the buds on the trees burst forth over a single, green weekend. I feel blessed when I get a card in the mail from a friend who's just checking in. I feel blessed when I see my siblings and my parents, and for the relationship that we've worked so hard to make good. I feel blessed when I look in the mirror at my belly and don't automatically make an "ugh" face. I feel blessed when the lilacs bloom, when my inbox holds a job offer, and when my freezing cold feet finally warm under the covers. And I feel blessed because I know that these things are a mixture of luck, hard work, paying attention, and, you know, some great unnameable force that acts for goodness in the world. Phil for short.