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Guyon: Gratitude

Thanksgiving is upon us, despite all the political turmoil, and for the sake of peace - both across the country and across the table - I'm trying to focus on gratitude - and things I think we can all be thankful for - like finally getting over this cold. They say variety is the spice of life, and I agree. So I’m grateful for the gloriously strong, sweetly compassionate, culturally diverse, rich assortment of people I get to call friend, neighbor and fellow citizen. Every color, country, culture represented. All of us. Together. I’m thankful to live in a place where millions of my neighbors have the courage to defend the rights and freedoms of others, especially the underprivileged, the persecuted, the bullied and the disenfranchised.

Compared to so many places, the United States is a safe, inclusive country, comprised for the most part, of kind, respectful people. I emigrated here with my parents and count my lucky stars that I get to call America home. And at a time when so many of our loved ones and neighbors - especially immigrants, people of color, members of the LGBTQ community, the disabled, and women - are worried about their safety, civil rights and freedoms, I'm grateful to see the wonderful groundswell of support for these groups across the nation.

I'm grateful for this country's natural wonders as well, from majestic mountains, sweeping plains, deep canyons, vast deserts, lush forests and raging rivers to tranquil lakes, dramatic shores, glorious wildlife, the extremes of every season and big skies. That’s a lot to be thankful for.

But it’s the people, who, when you come right down to it, are going to be either our salvation or our ruin. I’m thankful that, for the most part, I find salvation in my fellow man and woman.

It’s there in the simplest moments. In my little town, I’m one of many who deliver Meals on Wheels to homebound neighbors. Last week, as I was leaving one elderly woman’s house, after sharing laughs and laments about the recent election, she said "Thank you so much - you don't know how much this means to me."

I replied, "Right back at you, my dear. Thank you."

And that's what it gets down to. Human connection.

And love.

No explanation needed. I’m just thankful for it.

So today, I’m focusing on what's most important every day of the year.

And that’s taking care of each other.