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Becoming a Man:
Half a Life Story

Paul Monette

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That's it for today!



23 November 2001

Thank you for this precious day
These gifts you give to me
My heart so full of love for you
Sings praise for all I see

-John Denver

I thought about writing an entry called "Tradition," which would talk about our annual Thanksgiving tradition, but then discovered that I wrote that entry last year--and called it "Tradition." I have no originality.

So I want to spend this entry being grateful for the good things in my life. This country is going through a shift in "center," trying to decide what our "normal" is these days. It's a shift that I think those of us in this family have been making for the past five years, but still any tragedy, whether personal or national causes us to stop and think about the things that are important in our lives.

So for this Thanksgiving, I would like to give thanks for.....

...having been born to a wonderful woman who never ceases to inspire me with her love, her generosity--and, at 82, her stamina. I am so proud of having her for my mother.

...for having a husband who has loved me and put up with me for 37 years, who has allowed me to do my own thing without complaining (too much), and who has given me five wonderful children.

...for Jeri, Ned and Tom for being children of whom I am fiercely proud. For being the sugar and the spice. For standing strongly together for each other and for us through all of our tragedies, for being each unique individuals. For being some of my best friends.

...for the memory of David and Paul, who lived too short lives, but who made a difference in the lives around them and were a source of both frustration and great pride.

...for Marta, Laurel and Audra for loving our sons, for putting up with their foibles, for being good friends to me, and for being ideal additions to our family. It's hard to imagine more perfect matches.

...for wonderful in-laws. I hit the jackpot with a terrific mother-in-law, brother/sisters-in-law who are all good friends, and "extended in-laws" in Marta's family who have been so good to us, especially in the last few years.

...for old friends like the Piņata group, who have been there since college, who still remain good friends. Thanks for all the good times we've shared, and the sad times we've shared as well.

...for new friends like Peggy, Steve and Ron, who have each been unafraid to love me when I needed it, to kick me in the butt when I needed it, to share confidences and laughs, people with whom I feel comfortable to "sing all the secrets I'm too ashamed to share."

...for a cornucopia of other friends...people like Olivia, Lynn, RoseMarie, Melody, Sam, the CompuServe groups and other Internet friends, such as those from the Journaling community whom I'm just beginning to know and hope to know better.

...for the experience of Breaking Barriers and the privilege of getting to know special people like Priscilla

...for living in a country which, while not quite Paradise, is better than most and will do until the time is right for my own trip to Paradise.

...for my health and the ability to live comfortably and enjoy a few extravagances now and then.

...for a new job that I am discovering I absolutely love and for patient "old bosses," like the psychiatrist and the psychologist who don't give me too hard a time when I don't quite meet their deadlines because I worked longer than I expected to at my "regular job."

...for sunsets and rainbows, birds and sunflowers, raindrops and snowflakes and incredible blue skies. For crashing waves and mirror-still lakes. For the riot of color in an autumn forest and a patchwork quilt of tulips.

...for a basically happy life and the ability to enjoy it.

All my love to the special people in my life and my hope for an "uneventful" year for all of us, until the next turkey day. 

One Year Ago:

(Club Photo has started deleting
photo albums after 90 days,
so the photos which were once there,
have been removed now)

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Created 11/19/01 by Bev Sykes