Thursday, November 22, 2007

Giving Thanks

Sometimes we think others understand what we are thinking, how we feel about them, as we move through our lives.

You know, for example the grade school teacher who is daily opening new revelations in learning for your child. They know you are thankful for their efforts, right? You give them a Christmas gift, also the child makes them a little something, a drawing, or a fun craft (ideally involving glitter or something messy-makes it so much more fun, regardless of the fact that you have to clean it up later). You smile and say hello when you are in the classroom helping or dropping off your child. But they don't really know how you FEEL, what you THINK about their efforts. Unless you tell them.

We wrote posts for Nat'l Teacher Appreciation Week for G's teacher last year. I wrote one. G wrote one. Couple amazing things happened. The teacher loved them, sent us a nice note of thanks etc. The principal also had the posts put in her personnel file. But that wasn't the best part. The best part was being UNDERSTOOD. I thought it was so clear that we thought this teacher was great. But I never COMMUNICATED it. What a great feeling.

Or, say, it's someone's birthday, special holiday. Like Mother's Day last year. My mom knows I love her-I hug her and share my life, visit when I can, give her gifts on birthdays, Mother's Day. But I didn't really say some things that I think are special about her. So I blogged about it for Mother's Day. This had a great impact on her, as she wrote about the nicest thank you note I'd ever received, how moved she was at the things I said, would remember this for the rest of her life etc. I thought she knew how I felt. Hmm. But I guess not, til I TOLD her.

So seems fitting to bring this up on Thanksgiving Day as we are gathered with friends & family. So take it from me, don't ASSUME people know what you are feeling. TELL THEM how you feel about them, what makes them special, why you are thankful for their presence in your life.

Speak up, people!