**after you read this post be sure to scroll down to enter this weeks 31 days of Thanks giveaway via the rafflecopter form! This week's prizes total almost a $250 retail value! ~~Katie
When I signed up several months ago to be one of the bloggers for the 31 days of Thanks Series organized by the lovely Meg from Homeschooling Mama, I picked today because today is my wedding anniversary and our middle daughter's birthday and mostly, I am so thankful for my family. But this past semester, because of my current line of study, that has taken on such new meaning.
You see, last year I decided to go back to graduate school to get a second Masters degree in History. I am a full year into and loving it. This semester, I started doing an independent study on the Holocaust, which has become one of my interest areas, if not yet a specialty area.
Within this study, I read alot of books. alot of stories, and see alot of films. They all have something in common; all contain families. Families who for no other reason than their religion were separated from each other; most never to return. I watched a gut wrenching scene in the movie Sarah's Key , (based on the book) where, at a transition camp, the Mothers and their children are separated. Watching that scene made my heart drop into my feet. You know that feeling? Because this didn't happen in Medieval times, or the Middle Ages...this was a mere 70 years ago. After the Age of Enlightenment. After the Declaration of the Rights of Man. In a "civilized" world. This happened. Separated. Taken. Broken.
Studying this has changed my life, because it has changed my perspective. It has changed my depth of gratitude I have for small things. Now, when m 2 year old wants me to dance with her the 30 second song of our coo-coo clock (all day long, every day) I am no longer annoyed by this distraction but relish in those moments of holding her while her smile is ear to ear. While I have always loved being able to be home with my kids, I now fully appreciate how special getting to be with them every single day is. The privilege of it.
I thought I appreciated it before, but now in small, quiet moments of our day, my mind will go back to those stories, of those Mothers, crying in anguish, arms lifted up in despair over what is now lost to them forever, and I scoot a little closer, hug a little longer, squeeze a little tighter, appreciate more deeply, promise to not take one moment for granted. A promise to those mothers, under my breath, in my heart, to always be thankful.
You don't have to be a history nerd like me or be studying in depth a tragic era of a shared past to appreciate or to be thankful. But if you ever find yourself feeling stressed, bothered or just genuinely grumpy, take a few minutes to think of those mothers and make a silent promise that "Today, I will be forever thankful for my family".
God bless You.
This week's 31 days of Thanks giveaway is below! The giveaway ends this Thursday night. Be sure to enter and then check Meg's post on at Homeschoolin Mama on Saturday, or check back here at Brighton Park, to see if you are one of the lucky winners. Here are the prizes this week!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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