Motherhood & Words

It’s been a dark fall for me. Even the sunny and warm days that stretched into November couldn’t pull me up and out of myself. And when the more typical cold and gray November weather set in, I could feel my energy sink further. It’s only in the last few days that I have felt a little lighter, and I’m hoping this will continue.

But even when I’m feeling low, there is so much for which I’m thankful. So on this Eve of Thanksgiving, I’d like to list the things for which I’m grateful:

* A long weekend with family and friends and nourishing food.
* Reading—There is nothing like a wonderful novel or memoir to transport me, to remind me of how big the world is.
* My girls—I love those moments when they’re playing together, decked out in sunglasses and beaded necklaces, walking arm in arm around the dining room table laughing and singing, their bodies swaying as they scream, “We’re rock stars! We’re rock stars!”
* D—What else can I say?
* My parents, whose love and generosity never cease to amaze me.
* Friends—in person friends and those I know only here in the blogosphere. Thank you.
* Physical therapy—I’m finally taking the steps I need to take to be able to run again, and I’m so relieved.

For each of these things—and many, many more—I’m grateful. What are the things for which you’re grateful?

I hope you all have a lovely long weekend. Travel safely if you’re visiting friends and relatives. And thank you for being out there, reading and writing and living.

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I have been teaching creative writing for almost twenty years. Reading about other women’s lives and experiences has expanded my world. To be able to walk in someone else’s shoes, whether it’s for a moment or an hour or a few days, is an incredible gift, providing me with insight into the human experience. It takes courage to write your truths, especially if it doesn’t seem as though anyone cares, as though anyone is listening. Let me tell you: your stories matter, I’m listening, and I’m here to help you find the heart of those truths, to get them down on the page, to craft them, and to send them out into the world. Together, we will change the world, one story at a time.


  1. Sara on November 24, 2010 at 2:26 pm

    Among other things, I'm grateful for
    —family that I look forward to visiting (and that we don't have to fly to see them)
    —my little-big girl who is changing so fast
    —continuing traditions
    —three days off from work
    —a warm home in a friendly neighborhood suddenly overflowing with kids
    . . . I could go on, but I have more pies to bake.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

  2. The Blue Suitcase on November 24, 2010 at 3:38 pm

    I appreciate the encouragement to keep reminding myself how big the world is. While I sat here this morning ruminating and obsessing about the mild darkness of culture shock, I heard that our neighbors had just lost a 4-month old baby to SIDS. Appreciation…not just for what we have, but for the moment in which we have it.

  3. Andrea on November 24, 2010 at 3:41 pm

    I am grateful for:
    –Long weekends
    –Wool socks
    –Hot tea
    –The crazy windstorm outside right now that's blowing away everything not nailed down, especially the clouds
    –My three boys, who are the cutest, smartest, most ridiculous, most aggravating and exhausting human beings I've ever heard of.
    –My husband, who let me go away for a quick weekend visit to dear friends.
    –My dear friends, whom I drove 400 miles (each way) to meet for lunch.
    –Listening to an audio book read in a lilting southern accent while driving 800 miles.
    –Blog friends!

  4. kristenspina on November 24, 2010 at 7:09 pm

    Happy Thanksgiving, Kate. I'm grateful for so very much, including this wonderful community of writers, readers and moms. Enjoy your long weekend, and I hope you'll be feeling much lighter all the time soon.

  5. Ines on November 27, 2010 at 9:00 am

    Happy Thanksgiving to you too, Kate! I am so very grateful for many things and events that happen every day including unexpected friendship like ours. Thank you, Kate.

  6. householdwords on November 28, 2010 at 2:13 pm

    What a lovely idea for a post, Kate. I think it's always so hard to stay ungrumpy in November — those early nights, the cold before you're used to it (and I'm not even in Minnesota anymore!), blech. Thanks for this, though — it's always good to be reminded to be thankful. Also, the dining room rock stars game sounds awesome.

  7. Susan on November 29, 2010 at 11:11 am

    Just now seeing this. I am sorry you have been going through a rough time. I'm glad you seem to be emerging. Sending you much much love!

  8. kate hopper on November 29, 2010 at 11:16 am

    Thanks, everyone. Having you out there reading means the world to me!!