Touched by loss. Empowered through community.

I Am Thankful For...

Monday, November 30, 2015
Posted By: 
Marlene Delaney


Since this blog will be published on the Monday after Thanksgiving, I thought I would list all the things that I am thankful for:

  1. My children – they have supported me as I have supported them during the almost seven years since their father died. We have had some trying times but the good far outweighs the bad. They both graduated from college with high honors. They both have jobs. They both keep in touch with me (I am enjoying that my daughter is living at home now due to her current job location). If there could only be one thing in life that I could be thankful for, it would be them. They are the best and I love them more than I can say.

  2. My siblings – I have gotten significantly closer to them over the years (see my previous blog).

  3. My friends:

    1. The two friends that I have breakfast with almost every Sunday have been constants in my life since my husband died. They are there for me when I need them and I think I am there for them during their difficult times (and good times, too).

    2. The other widows in my life – new friends and old friends – have helped me realize that life goes on – not exactly as planned but not in a terrible way either.

    3. My husband’s best friend is a great guy and he would do anything for me. He has included us in his family events, we go to dinner quite frequently, and we continue to participate in our holiday traditions with him just like before my husband died.

    4. My neighbors have been good friends. I am thankful that they own snow blowers and help me clear the snow from my driveway when it snows too much. I am thankful that we can stand outside (in nice weather) and talk.

    5. My book club group has been a nice addition to my life. I get to share my love of reading with my neighbors and their book selection takes me out of my usual genre which I appreciate.

  4. My volunteer work has helped me find fulfillment well beyond my expectations. The time I spend working with non-native English speakers has given me insight into being an immigrant in the United States that I would never have gotten through reading books and newspapers. And some of my students and co-tutors have become very close friends.

  5. My job has changed significantly since my husband died – mostly for the better.  I have more responsibilities (and more money) which I love.  My husband always told me I should strive for more in my career and he was right. I wake up most mornings excited to go to work – that is something I really am thankful for. My employees are a good bunch of guys who work hard and also show their appreciation to me. For example, I took them to a Cubs/White Sox game this summer and they gave me an autographed ball to record the event (and the Cubs victory). The other managers I work with are a good group, too. We help each other out and support each other.

  6. My house is a pain but I am thankful that I own it, that the mortgage is paid off, that nothing major has gone wrong lately (knock on wood), and that I smile whenever I pull into the driveway knowing I am home.

  7. My car is a pleasure for me most of the time. It is a 2008 but my husband and I bought it before he died and I transferred his personalized license plates to my car. I am thankful that it is still reliable. I am also thankful for my dealership that always takes care of me – even when it is as simple as putting nitrogen in the tires. And right at this moment, I am thankful that I have a reliable body shop that will repair the damage from when I was recently rear-ended.

As I am typing this, I realize that I have so many good things in my life – people and things – that I am thankful for and that this list is not complete. I hope all of you can say the same.


Marlene, it is so easy to focus on the bad in our lives, you did a wonderful job reflecting on what is good and why. It makes me want to make my own list!

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