Falling Back into Gratitude

June has arrived, and here on Cape Cod, the trees are a stunning green, and the rhythmic blossoming of the annuals has begun.

The transition from spring to summer brings a mix of familiar feelings and strange new experiences. The other day, after a workday filled with unique and unusual interactions (see my other blog), I came home to make dinner. When I finally sat down, in that state of exhaustion and aimless staring, we heard a woman yelling.

At first, we thought she was calling my neighbor’s name, but soon realized she was screeching mine, followed by “HELP!”

We have wild turkeys in our neighborhood, and one seems to think I’m his servant. He sleeps curled up on my stair stoop and pecks at the deck slider if I don’t acknowledge him.

The woman yelling “Kristen” was because a turkey was aggressively circling and attacking our neighbor and her dog. She was yelling and flailing, even throwing her cell phone at the wing-outstretched bird! All the while, her dog simply sniffed the air.

My daughter and I ran out to interrupt the attack. We quickly realized it wasn’t our turkey (who’s a male) but a female. Then we heard the distinct chirping of the babies this mother was fiercely protecting.

The commotion stopped, and the mother turkey, after a few more wing flutters and cawing, walked away.

Our neighbor and her dog walked home, and I returned to my kitchen island, wondering whether to laugh or cry from exhaustion. I simply asked my daughter, “Did that really just happen?”

Is your current life filled with “Did that just really happen?” moments? If so, perhaps like me, you’d like to lean into your basic spiritual wellness toolbox and fall back on gratitude.

Spiritual practices can be weird sometimes. You get into a groove and use one tool for a while, and it might fall away only to return when something reminds you of the comfort it brought or the feeling it created within your daily balance of outer and inner life.

May to June these last few months have proven to be challenging for my clients and me. Finding that one strategy to rely on during challenging times can create a sense of coming home.

For me, daily gratitude provides that feeling.

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