For what in your life do you feel most grateful?

It’s hard for me to choose what I feel most grateful for. Part of me thinks I should be most grateful for my family, or more specifically for my husband, or whatever. But I think what I feel most grateful for is that I’ve had a relatively easy life. I was born in an affluent, western democracy. I was raised by both my parents, who stayed married to each other until my mother died, and I didn’t want for any of life’s basic necessities. I got to go to college. I found someone I wanted to marry who also wanted to marry me, and it was not difficult for me to get pregnant and have kids. We did not have to spend many years worrying about money; our worst-case scenario never included the possibility of being thrown out on the streets. We’ve never gone through a period where both of us were unemployed. I’ve always been able to get the health care I need, and so have my children. I have a much easier life than I probably deserve.

Is it cheating to talk about all of these things as though it is just one thing to be grateful for? It’s just that I can chalk all of these things up to my own dumb luck. I am very grateful for my dumb luck, and I suppose it is the thing I’m most grateful for, because it’s the thing I’m most afraid of losing (or running out of). Because there’s nothing I can do to keep being lucky or prevent myself from being unlucky. I am grateful that I have been mostly very lucky in life–certainly luckier than about 90% or maybe even 95% of the rest of the world–because I really wouldn’t like that to change.

Possibly I shouldn’t be so grateful for my great gobs of luck. Maybe if I’d been less lucky in life, I’d have better character. But I’m not silly enough to wish for opportunities to develop greater character. I think I’ll just take them randomly, as fate wills.

But if I need to be more specific, I suppose I would say I’m most grateful for indoor plumbing. Indoor plumbing is pretty much the best thing ever. It’s hard to come up with something I like better.

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