December 14 – Appreciate. What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it? (Author: Victoria Klein)
In the past year, I’ve really come to appreciate many aspects of my life and how fortunate I’ve been throughout it. I’m happy, healthy, and have great friends. Soon I will be finished with one of the biggest goals I set out for myself and moving on to a new life.
But that’s not the difficult part of this prompt for me. The thing that trips me up the most is the “show gratitude” part. I’ve made a point in the last couple of years to tell the people I love that I love them more often. It’s simple enough, those three little words we often think but seldom say. The response has been good for the most part, with only a few awkward moments of surprise that quickly led to acceptance.
But I feel like there is more that I can do to show my friends and family that I appreciate them and all the great things we share. I feel like I complain a lot. This semester, I had a class with five students in it and it was one of the most intense teaching experiences I’ve had in my career. I complained every night I got home from that class, “so much work,” “so few students for three hours a week,” blah blah blah. Looking over their portfolios and reflection papers today they all mentioned how thankful they were that the class was so small, that they got so much out of it because we spent so much time on each student’s writing. And they all did really well, growing, working together, and improving their writing. And I didn’t appreciate what I had while I had it.
Next semester I’m back to a more conventional class, one I taught and loved last spring. I’m hoping I can hold on to the feeling I have today and make that class equally as good. I’ll try not to be too distracted and make sure to thank them as well.