An Exercise in Finding Gratitude in 2020

A Drop in the Ocean Sustainable Living Zero Waste Shop Gratitude

This post first appeared in our weekly Make Waves Mondays email series on November 23, 2020.

Sooo...this week I was going to share some tips for “being zero waste around your non-zero waste family,” or something like that. And while on the one hand it still feels relevant, that’s not how I want to use this space today.

Because so many of us are spending Thanksgiving alone. During a time of the year where we are usually surrounded by friends, family, laughter, and love, 2020 has other plans for us.

It’s easy to focus on what’s gone wrong this year. Or rather, what’s happened outside of our control this year.

Maybe it’s not what’s gone wrong. Maybe we all needed this year to show us what we truly want. What we need. What our country needs. How we can be better humans.

Better people.

This year has been hard. There is no denying that. And the end of a calendar year, while a symbol of hope and renewal, doesn’t make everything good again. Because if we’re being honest, 2020 has shown us that maybe things weren’t actually all that great to begin with. Some of us may have been aware of that already; many of us weren’t.

But this week - this week of giving thanks - I want to use this space to share gratitude. Because I think we could all use some light about now.

So, friend, today I’m sharing 20 things I’m grateful for in 2020. And I’d like to hear what you’re grateful for, too.

This year, I’m grateful for….

  1. This community. (I promise I’m not just saying that - ask the people closest to me and they’ll confirm that I am always saying how much I love this group of people. So thank you for being here, truly.)
  2. My apartment; a roof over my head while so many of our neighbors do not have that luxury.
  3. My cat, Ellie, who after several weeks of abnormal behavior is back to being her active, spunky self.
  4. My houseplants - Gerry, Millie, Lilly, Thumper, Sebastian, Allen, Betty, Lisa, Krystina (yes, really), Penelope, and Bob.
  5. Friends that support me, challenge me, tell me like it is, and love me even when I mess up. I mess up a lot, thank you for still being my people.
  6. The Tacoma small business community. What an immense privilege it is to know and learn from and alongside these incredible people.
  7. The opportunity I have recently been given to focus all of my energy on building this business and community.
  8. My virtual assistant, Nichole. You have been an absolute godsend already, and I cannot express my gratitude to you enough. Thank you for being here.
  9. My friend and COO, Jensen. A Drop in the Ocean, and my life, wouldn’t be what it is without your support, honesty, critique, knowledge, encouragement, and never ending patience. Thank you for reminding me to always celebrate the wins.
  10. Tacoma. Packing up my life and moving cross-country to start a business from nothing was a gamble, but this city has been everything I hoped and more.
  11. Technology that connects us, even when we’re apart. Sierra, John, Damon, Dan, Jenn - I don’t know what I would do without our group chat and reunion calls. I love you guys.
  12. Vermilion Sea Institute, Meghann McDonald, Katie Dell, and my entire Baja fam. My life would not be what it is without you all and the experiences we had together. I love you all.
  13. The person singing O Come All Ye Faithful across the street right now. Thank you for the early holiday joy you just brought into my life, without even knowing.
  14. My vendors, especially those who have been part of the A Drop in the Ocean family since the beginning. It’s an honor to support other small businesses, local artists and makers, and community members. I’m grateful for each of you every single day.
  15. My best friend, Casey. We’ve been through a lot, even just this year, but know I’m always so grateful to have you in my life.
  16. My mail carrier, who picks up your packages from my doorstep every week so I don't have to drive them all to the post office.
  17. Yoga Wild, and co-founders Casey and Kelsey. Your passion for yoga, community, justice, and equity is inspiring. It’s been a great pleasure getting to know you since I arrived in Tacoma, and to watch your business grow and adapt. I’ve learned so much from you; keep up the incredible work you do each day. I can’t wait to be able to connect in person again.
  18. Netflix. Because my introverted self loves nothing more than a good Netflix binge.
  19. A community - both those around me and those that I’ve never met - that has taught me so much about the world we live in. A community that has called me out and called me in and challenges me to grow, learn, and unlearn. I’m not the same person I came into 2020 as, and I’m grateful for that.
  20. You. Your presence in this EcoWarrior community is valued, and I am forever grateful that you allow me space in your life. I consider the EcoWarriors part of my family, so thank you for being part of the fam.

What are you grateful for today?

All my love,

P.S. This Thanksgiving remember whose land you’re on. I live, work, and learn on the native lands of the Coast Salish and Puyallup people. Text your zip code to (907) 312-5085 to find out whose land you’re on.

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