Cultural habits, Storytelling

Gratitude list for 2020

Even this nightmare of a year deservers some credit.

December is almost over, with that, a new year fresh of new promises and ideas. It feels like I’m in a sort of sleep paralysis, where I know I’m awake, yet I can’t move. Like the rest of us, being stuck at home, without having any idea of what could happen tomorrow, gave me a great deal of anxiety.A lot happened during the most dramatic season yet. 

While I was preparing the list of posts I want to write for this month, the first thing that came to my mind was a gratitude list. Not unintentional though, as a few days ago, I’ve seen on a segment of a morning show, when a person said that being grateful for small things every day, can have the same or better results than therapy. I can’t afford therapy, so let’s see if it works long term. 

Everyone should work on a Gratitude list. Here is the list of what I’m grateful for this year

Have a house to live in. 

Cosy home environment

A few months ago, I got hit by surprise when I found out a complex I lived in Georgia in 2016, had put my name on a renter’s blacklist, which its Renters Bureau, an affiliated of Experian. It was a company that only works with rental companies and you have no idea because it doesn’t affect your credit, only your ability to rent a place to live. We only find out because it showed up on an application we put to a housing complex, here in Colorado. 

We already had most of our things packed to move, yet, we didn’t have a place to live. And we had no idea of what to do, since resolving this would take at least 45 days. We decided to rent an Airbnb for a month, while we get here and figure out. We got here on Saturday and we found a place to live on Monday. I explain to the landlord my situation and she said it wasn’t a problem. A few days later we got the apt to move in at the beginning of December. 

The idea of not having a place to live is one of the scariest things I’ve lived through. The idea of living from Airbnb to Airbnb indefinitely kept me awake. I cannot imagine the fear of people that can’t afford to pay rent or mortgage during this time. 

If you ever left an apartment complex before your lease was over, especially in Georgia, check if you are not on this blacklist too. Even though I rent other places in my name, Colorado made it hard on me.

I’m thankful for having a place to live. 

My family. 

They hold on to me during all my panic attacks. Even the ones they created. I pointed my head in the right direction when I was completely out of focus. They listen to me screaming that this government sucks, that Dr. Fauci acts like the Dungeon Master, from Dungeons and Dragons Cartoon that according to Wikipedia article is “The Dungeon Master (DM) assumes the role of the game master or referee and describes for other players what they perceive in this imaginary world, and what effects their actions have.[4] That person is responsible for preparing each game session, and must have a thorough understanding of the game rules.”

 While I had multiple meltdowns, they pull me back up. When I was so worried about my parents back home, my husband promptly asked me if I wanted to see them in Brazil. We can do it, we care about the money later. That’s what credit cards are for.   

My health. 

Cheetos Mac and Cheese Nutrition fact.

I’m thankful for being born and raised in a country where we get all the nutrients necessary in the simplest food we can find. Growing up, my mom used to feed me raw duck eggs and cinnamon, a magical soup, with blended ingredients I didn’t want to eat and real food every day. If you read my posts, you know I have a problem with overprocessed food, Corn Syrup, GMOs, pesticides, and chicken that is the size of a turkey. 

I’m not a hypocrite, I do eat McDonald’s and sweets. But when it comes to feed myself and sustain my body with food, I watch closely what I’m eating. The Microwave at home is for small tasks and not to cook food in it. 

When the Coronavirus hit in March, there was a lack of Emergen-c in the supermarkets. This is my to-go supplement because I remember my first winter in Chicago, where all my coworkers got sick with the Flu. After all, they got the Flu Vaccine, I decided not to take it, as I couldn’t afford to lose working days. I trusted my body and my vitamins and was the only one on the staff who didn’t call out.

 Who knows maybe, I’m strong because of the raw duck eggs my mom made me drink as a child.  

My friends are my support system. 

During a chaotic time, I reached out to these people every time. There were days when I wanted to hide under my bed as a dog scared of the garbage truck. All I needed to do was send my friends a message, to complain, share a laugh, discuss someone else’s life. Like we were discussing a movie or a soap opera.  

I’m thankful for the internet too. I was able to see their faces, record podcasts, share ideas. They made my days bearable. I’m thankful for every message, every meme, and every cheer up moments. 

I can’t wait to see you guys in person. 

Hobbies that distracted me in difficult times

Dungeon Master – from Dungeons and Dragons Cartoon.

In quarantine, I improved my drawing skills( believe me, the drawing above is an improvement), wrote two scripts for the writing program at Nickelodeon, photographed food at my friend’s dinner parties, participated in podcasts, and worked to get the blog seen. I had it for about two years before I get it to post at least every week. This blog is what I’ve been eagerly working to succeed.  

I also cooked a lot. Even though at the begging of quarantine, the flour vanished from the supermarkets, I found some at the Mexican grocery store. I want to bake bread too guys! What a bunch of selfish people. 

This is the list of I’m thankful for this year. Have you written a gratitude list yet? What are you thankful for? Let me know in the comments! 

J.G.Snelly

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