The year is nearly done. Most of us are disappointed with it, even as we feel a little older, very dejected, or that there were things we could have done better! And suddenly I can hear my late mother sing a song, she loved to sing, “Count your many blessings, name them one by one!”

My mother loved singing in the kitchen!

 “Ma, I can hear your voice!” I cry out in my mind.

And I can hear her say, “Start counting your blessings Bob. You’ll start feeling better!”

And I do! I count on my fingers. I count on my toes. I go back to my fingers, again to my toes then chuckle and think, “Fool, that I am! Why am I depressed? There’s so much to be thankful for!”

Ah! How easy to forget being thankful for all we take for granted:

We worry our child hasn’t done well in school, right? But give thanks he or she is healthy. Be thankful we have a child, when so many long for one.

We are unhappy with our job, especially with all this working from home, but have you seen the face of a man who is sacked? Who gets into his car which he hasn’t paid for yet? Enters a flat whose loan is so huge that he knows today is his last journey up on a fancy lift, before the bank forecloses? Give thanks for your secure job.

We look at what we think is an ordinary looking husband or wife and stare lustily at handsome hunks on the sports page or semi-nudes on WhatsApp forwards, forgetting our wife or husband will always be faithful, will always love us. Have always loved us!

Count your blessings!

I look at pictures of grief, which adorn our news pages and my heart cries out in thanks for a family alive and kicking!

Thank you for the sudden rain, that even as I complain I know I have a house that shelters me unlike many homeless on the roads.

Thank you for traffic jams, for as I look at other cars blocking my way, I know I’m in the midst of people and not lying in some hospital with covid, lonely and unwanted with nurses who may not tolerate my pain, or my crying out loud!

Thank you for all the things we keep complaining about in our country, that even as we do, we can hope for change, something many in dictatorship lands across the border can’t ever hope for!

I sing out loud, ‘Count Your Many Blessings!’ and do I hear my late mother joining in from the kitchen?   

And I keep counting on my fingers, then my toes, go back to my fingers, again to my toes, and I’m still counting..!

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