Thoughts on this post? Share them with me on Facebook, join the SPANily or Tweet me at @angieatkinson. ~Angie

My oldest son’s first Christmas was a tough one. We went out of town to celebrate with family, and someone broke into our home while we were gone. They took everything of any value and many things that were sentimentally important and irreplaceable.

However, they were just things, and we were okay. Even so, it felt like we’d been violated. They even went through our clothing and food.

It took some time to heal, and to be honest, I still need to sleep with a light on eleven years later.

We’ve since moved and I generally feel very safe in my home. In fact, when I feel myself getting upset or nervous (read: paranoid) about our safety, I affirm: “We are safe in our home.” Simple, effective, and to the point.

Speaking of “to the point,” allow me to get there.

On Wednesday, we had a fire at our house. It was relatively small, in the grand scheme of things, but we did lose the front bushes.

I was putting away groceries while holding Sophie, when someone began banging on the door and window. To be honest, at first, I was annoyed and a little bit scared since it was just the baby and I home alone. But I went and peeked out the window and there it was.

I flung open the door and handed my daughter to a neighbor I’d never met. We called the fire department and the neighbor sat in his warm car with his wife and my daughter while his adult son helped me to put out the fire.

We managed to put the fire out before the fire department arrived, but they still checked everything out to be safe, which I appreciated very much.

Our bushes were almost completely destroyed, but we managed to save the house. What an amazing gift.

Through it all, all I could say was THANK YOU.

Thank you to the neighbors from three doors down, who I’ve waved at but never met in the almost six years we’ve lived here. You helped me without question when you didn’t have to. THANK YOU, THANK YOU. Without you, I could’ve lost so much more than my bushes. I am eternally grateful.

Thank you to my husband for coming home and taking care of me after the fire, and for cutting down those burnt bushes and making our home look nice again. You were my knight in shining armor.

Thank you to my neighbor Joe, who came and talked with me after the fire, and who gave me the name and address of the neighbors from three doors down so that I could send them a thank you gift.

Thank you to the fire department who double checked that we had no hidden fires, even looking under the siding on the house to be safe.

Thank you to my family and friends who were concerned about us and who checked to make sure that we were all okay.

It’s amazing how something so scary can make us realize how much we have for which to be grateful. Every day, I am grateful for my family’s health and safety, for the love that we have, for our home and our security.

But this event made me understand something else. Sometimes we get caught up in our own petty thoughts, negative self talk, and the like. But none of that matters.

You know what matters in your life, what REALLY matters. Think about it. You can probably come up with a short list pretty quickly. And, I’ll bet, it doesn’t contain the latest office gossip or the argument you had with your spouse.

Today, I challenge you to take a few minutes to be grateful for those things and people in your life that mean the world to you. Make some calls, pass out some hugs, and embrace the love in your heart.

Feel the love, feel the gratitude. It feels amazing, folks. Give it a shot. You won’t regret it. 🙂

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10 Responses to What Really Matters?

  1. I try to do that daily but am not perfect. But I do know that because of your post Angie, I won’t forget to be grateful today.

  2. I am so glad that it wasn’t more serious:-)

  3. You’re so right. I’ve been going over this issue in my head for the past couple of weeks. But you spell it out wonderfully so THANK YOU!! Glad you and your family are ok. :o)

  4. Thank you for writing this Angie, I know exactly what you mean right now. I am so glad you and the baby were okay and nothing was seriously damaged.

  5. Angie…you have done far greater than just POST this blog…you have touched a part of what makes us kind and caring…those moments of gratitude so deep…that words will never ever be able to fully convey!

    I am so pleased, and eternally grateful you and your family are safe!

  6. Angie,
    I’m so grateful you, Sophie and your home are safe. I very much agree with The Muse. Your post is a reminder to all about what truly matters in our lives and to be grateful for all that we have.

    I’m sending lots of love and hugs your way. I’m truly grateful to have a friend like you in my life.

    Many Blessings….
    Roxanne ~ Believe Achieve

  7. Wow; you certainly put things into perspective with this post, Angie. I’m glad to read that you and your family are OK; just the bushes. Whew! But I know what you mean about neighbors. How many neighbors do I wave to but never take the time to invite over for a cup of coffee or talk? We get so busy in our own lives. But it’s nice to read how your neighbors were right there when you were in need. That’s wonderful.

  8. I’m glad you are all safe.
    Thank you for reminding me to be grateful of all the loves in my own little world, we all need a gentle poke once in a while

  9. I’m glad you are safe. It is good to realise the benefits of these situations – how grateful they make you feel. I’m definitely going to try and take a leaf out of your book!

  10. HI Angie,

    Its soooo long since I’m blogging! Wish you a wonderful yar ahead! The world is watching America….

    I’m sorry to read about ur burglary…thank God ur all safe.can well understand your fear…as I too had a similar incident while I was at home alone with my son! Luckily for us we were asleep n untouched…N all he stole was my cards and he ate 2 bananas while he was at it! he threw the peels in my living room.. I only discovered the theft after I saw the peels lying around. I’m still not sure if I was more confused than I was scared and relieved ..all at the same time!

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