A window inside life at Augustana College

What is “thankfulness” anyway?

Hi everyone! So I’m new here but for my first post I decided to submit my Observer article about thankfulness! If you have any comments, leave ’em! I’d love to hear what you’re thankful for! 😀


Well it’s that time of year again: crunching leaves, bonfires, cozy sweaters, Thanksgiving, and endless posts, greeting cards, and decorations asking: “What are you thankful for?”. This Thanksgiving, I decided to think differently about what I was thankful for, and what Americans in general should be thankful for. Here we go!

I’m thankful for each Tuesday I step out of my apartment into air that smells of dog food. Though I cringe my nose, this air quality is a lot better than in Beijing, China. It’s difficult to remember to be grateful for something that comes so naturally and automatically. I’m not hooked up to life support or have to wear a gas mask in the smog. All things considered, we’re good!

I’m thankful for mistakes and painful lessons that accompany them. Potential for growth is everywhere, especially when you least expect or wish for it. Seize it. Move on, but never forget what your mistake taught you.

I’m thankful for the days where I squeeze into an older pair of jeans (only to find that they’re not fitting as well as they used to) because it means that I live in a place where I have success to food and am able to nourish my body.

We should be thankful for the last parking space at Target. You know, the one at the very end that everyone tries so desperately to avoid? Be thankful for that because your legs can carry for from your vehicle to Target. Sometimes I forget how great it is to have working limbs.

Americans should be thankful and appreciative of all the complaining and whining about the government we are consistent pelted with. For Augie students, it’s the complaining about the Olin stairs, homework assignments, or line at the CSL. Freedom of speech should not be underappreciated.

I’m grateful for the Moodle quizzes, the labs that drag on, and the endless term papers I have to finish for my majors because it means I am getting an education that is enabling me with the tools to make society a better brighter place. Education is not always available, especially not for women, so quit complaining! You’re the one that signed up for this and you always have the option to leave if you so choose.

We should all be thankful for our alarm clocks that wake us up for work, school, or the day in general because it means we have survived yet another day of this crazy life. Take advantage of it and make something of your day. Not everyone can sleep without fear or worry. I often forget that others in the world, even in the Quad Cities, live in constant fear of being killed, drugged, or some other horrible outcome.

The message of this article? Perspective is everything. Don’t underestimate the power and potential of this life you’ve been given. You may think the grass is greener on the other side, but if you took time to water your on grass it would be just as green.

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