It’s Thanksgiving Eve here in America. I thought I would pause to reflect on what I am thankful for during this time of festivities.
1) My wife. She has travelled all around the world with me and has stuck by me every step of the way on my crazy Yoga path, with my blogging, with my jobs in the mental health profession, and on every other endeavor I have pursued. She has the best sense of humor and is the glue that holds our family together. I love her very much.
2) My mom. She is the reason I moved to Hawai’i. That was one of the best decisions of my life (although I wouldn’t recommend it for everyone). At 69, she continues to grow younger than me every year. She is breast cancer survivor of 25 years. Her faith and spiritual power make me look like an amateur. This woman can perform miracles! She handily won an art competition with her Picassoesque painting and continues painting as a serious hobby.
3) My teachers. Ray Madigan and Shelley Choy have taken me under their wing and have given me the tools to flourish as a Yoga teacher. With their tutelage, I was able to go head to head with the best in my assessment and come out certified. They have given me wonderful teaching opportunities and have welcomed me with open arms to their studio.
4) My job. In 2008 on this date before Thanksgiving, I remember finishing my work as a case manager only to come home and read the paper that all the funding had been cut for the program I was working for. I was unemployed soon thereafter. Today, I am gainfully employed and am appreciative of the chance to make a living in Hawai’i helping people with severe mental illness. To avoid any kind of a HIPAA violation, I will instead show a rainbow I photographed during a morning commute to said job.
5) My family. Luke and Toshiko took me in as their son-in-law and we all live in the same big house. To communicate with them you have to shout (because Luke is hard of hearing) and speak a hybrid of Japanese and English (because Toshiko doesn’t speak English that well). This makes for an often hilarious daily adventure. Luke has had a tough year with health issues, but that does not get in his way. He is a retired Master Sergeant from special forces and a retired labor and delivery nurse.
Also, my brothers Mark and David. Mark lives in here in Hawai’i and my brother lives in New Mexico. Both have given me much support over years. My Dad who lives in New Mexico also gives me wonderful support and guidance.
6) My Stepdad Tim. I have know him since I was four and he has taken great care of my mom during all of her ups and downs. His sense of humor has gotten us all through tough times. He still makes the best pasta sauce and biscotti from his family’s recipe.
7) B.K.S. Iyengar. He passed this year but has left such a legacy that he is still very alive through his writings and through his teachings. He will go down in history of one of the great men.
Happy Thanksgiving all and thank you very much for doing yoga!