It’s upon us, everyone! The time of year when eating for two isn’t just for the pregnant women but all us regular folk as well! Remember to give thanks before stuffing yourself with your aunt’s famous stuffing though. What to give thanks for you may ask?

Well, as I attended a meditation meeting today I realized that since being in recovery and learning to practice mindfulness I have become a lot more aware of the here and the now. It started with being able to control what’s called the ‘monkey brain’ for maybe a moment or two. Then it graduated to stillness for ten, even twenty minutes at one time. Now, this may not seem like a long period of time, but if you’re in any form of recovery you may also suffer from focusing too much on the past or worrying too much about the future and what could be as opposed to what is in this very moment. Focusing on what’s happening right now, even as you’re reading this, you’re taking power away from anxiety of tomorrow and from your mind dwelling on what has been. This is a grounding technique that has really helped me be happier in my recovery and life as a whole and that is something I’m thankful for!

Back in addiction, I felt lost and hopeless and through recovery, I have found people who support me and want me to be successful. Even when days aren’t good they’re still not so bad. Days aren’t bad enough for me to give up on the here and the now and not bad enough to stop doing what has worked for me so far. That’s something to be grateful for.

One of the many gifts of sobriety is being able to look at all the things I do have now even if they’re small and realizing I didn’t have that before. I woke up today in Phoenix, so I am thankful. I have a roof over my head, so I am thankful. I have a bed to sleep on, so I am thankful. I have a strong program of recovery today, so I am thankful. I am writing this and you are reading this, so I am thankful. I am a part of a sober living home in Phoenix, a sober living home in Tucson, and a sober living home in Scottsdale, so I am thankful. Whatever your life is and wherever you’re at in your recovery something at this moment even just being present as you read it is a reason to thank the universe for allowing you to have it. Try and remember that even if your friends or family eat your favorite side dish this holiday season because you have them and you have that moment.

Happy Turkey Day!

Written by Dani Maldonado.

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