Six Things

making a listTry this: Try making a list of six things you feel good about – even on days you walk through frigid puddles of slush. I try to make a list like this every couple of weeks, whenever a whinier self threatens to get the upper hand.

Right now I’m drawing up mine as fast as I can write. I find it feels more ‘true’ or accurate if I ambush myself this way and compose it on the spur of the moment.

Below then, without further talk, what I have as today’s list of Six Things I Love.

  • I love seeing packs of girls with ponytails jogging, as they do for Cross Country practice. I love the way their hair switches back and forth with each step. They remind me of so many young horses cantering slow and easy over the landscape.
  • I love it when I overhear people talking to themselves. Last Monday I heard a man say “Fat Chance!” to his car door. The week before, a woman walking into a store passed me saying to herself, “Your gloves are in your pocket. DO NOT LOSE THEM!”  Of course I always need to be sure the people really ARE talking to themselves and not to unseen others on their cell phones; but when they are, they give me such a great peek into their minds. It makes me feel like the two heavenly spirits in the movie City of Angels, who perch atop tall buildings in LA and, with alert and compassionate expression, ’listen in’ on every thought that passes through the wee mortal heads of the motorists in the traffic below.
  • I love that first bite of the forbidden cookie that I have decided to go ahead and eat anyway. The second bite is great too, and the third is pretty good as well, but by Bite Four I’m having second thoughts. Which brings us to Number Four:

  • I love the way my mate lets me foist the rest of such cookies off on him. I’m like the little kid who takes a bite of that one chocolate from the chocolate box, grimaces and surreptitiously spits it into the waiting palm of his parent. I love the forbearance of the man who will finish eating what I only thought I wanted to eat, when the idea of eating it was really what compelled me.
  •  I love the day’s first sip of coffee –  that’s Five –  and finally…
  • speaking of the day’s firsts, I love these dark winter mornings when I rise early and look out to find the rest of the world still sleeping, even the winter birds not yet tuning their instruments. The world just feels so cozy to me then, as if we’re all in a snug cabin in some ancient Hobbit-y forest.

So there it is; that’s my list. Now you draw up one, and just SEE if it doesn’t make you smile, frigid ankles and all.

half eaten cookie

Author: Terry Marotta

I am syndicated columnist, blogger and author who loves any chance to give talks about the ease of first-person writing.

9 thoughts on “Six Things”

  1. My “quick” six things that make me feel good:
    1. my morning 10 minute Scripture reading.
    2. a slow and hot cup of herbal tea while I chew on those Scriptures for the next 10 minutes.
    3. the cats sitting patiently by my feet as I fix my wife’s coffee because they know that cat treats are not far behind.
    4. getting good news from a family member or close friend.
    5. seeing a soldier return home to loved ones.
    6. watching the earth’s eastern horizon humbly bow to the sun so as to reveal it’s life giving light.

  2. During a conversation with a trust officer at the bank that holds my IRA ( whom I have known for years) I made a statement, and finished it up by saying, “Just call me Pollyanna.” He replied, :”Are we on a first name basis now? “

  3. I like “things I love” better than “gratitude list”, Terry. Oprah Winfrey tells the story of crying to her friend Maya Angelou about how depressed she is with things and receiving the advice that she write five things every day that she is grateful for. Oprah said it changed her life; she continues the practice daily. I do it sometimes and will now call it “Things I Love.” Thank you, dear friend.

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