Gratitude for life is one of those things we don't speak of much. "I'm grateful to be alive" tends to be a phrase reserved for survivors of plane crashes, or over-enthusiastic guys in 80's movies. I'm not sure why. Maybe because of its cheesiness? Maybe because we're British?!
Despite all of this: I really am grateful to be alive right now.
And by this I mean, I am grateful to be here to experience this; I'm aware that I could not be, and happy that I am.
It means there have been times in the past year where I have really not wanted to keep Being, where life just felt like day after day of panic and grey, and I couldn't imagine that there would be sunnier days and peacefulness and contentment.
I was in no way grateful to be alive, closer to Job's cry,
“Why then did you bring me out of the womb?" (Job 10:18)
I felt bad that I wanted to stop existing, when other terminally-ill people would give anything for another year with their precious family. It seemed like such an unfair distribution of life.
And so, in the context of all of that, there are beautiful days like today when I'm so grateful something inside of me (or rather, outside of me) decided to keep living.
Moments where you think "it would have been sad to miss this". Times when life is just really sweet, even if only for an afternoon. It's at these points - the moments you'd happily bottle up and keep it for crummier days - where hope grows back, like fresh buds from a seemingly dead branch.
Suddenly, yet again, there is hope, urged into life a little more by each moment of happiness. And for every stormy day, these days keep me going, in the knowledge that if you just keep pushing through, the sunshine will, eventually, return.