It’s Thanksgiving, and as such, I want to honor the spirit of the day by going over some of those things that I take as blessings in my life. There are many.

Psalm 106:1 NLT“Praise the Lord! Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good!  His faithful love endures forever.”

To begin, I am thankful for a half-century of living. In that time, I have experienced great heartache, but also, great joy.

I’ve lived long enough to see innovations that have changed the world.

Seriously, who remembers rotary phones? I do. Push button phones are better. Cell phones are best.

I’ve also lived long enough to see classmates, friends, and loved ones pass away. That part isn’t much fun, but on the other hand, I’ve lived long enough to see babies born, watch them grow, evolve, and become separate, unique, wonderful adults.

Speaking of which, I’m so thankful for my son, Casey.

Casey was born a month and 1 day before my 22nd birthday. From the moment I laid eyes on him, he became the love of my life.

An abusive marriage had come to a sudden end just the day before, so I raised him all alone. I wouldn’t marry again, because I was afraid that a new husband wouldn’t treat him well.

We had moments of struggle, and I worked hard to make sure Casey had whatever he wanted or needed. He could have turned to the bad, but that wasn’t my kid.

He excelled at academics, high school wrestling, and earned a free ride to college.

Today he is a gorgeous, funny, compassionate, adult. He’s also a school teacher and wrestling coach. He’s like his mama – fiercely independent – and makes me proud every day.

When I think of my years struggling to raise my child, I can’t let my parents or my brothers go without a lot of thanks.

My family forged who I was, and instilled in me the strength to do what I had to do to raise such a great kid, no doubt.

They were also my main support. My parents often watched Casey while I worked so many long hours to pay the bills. My brothers, at various times and in various ways stepped up to be the male influences in Casey’s life.

Today, as my parents are in their later years, I’m here to take care of them. My daddy is bedridden, stricken with the ravages of Lewy Body Dementia, and it’s so difficult to watch him slip in and out of his life, having good days and bad.

Psalm 145:9 NIV“The Lord is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.”

The bad seem to be coming more frequently, now, but I’m so thankful to be able to have this time with him.

I’m very thankful to RedState and the readers. I love doing what I do. I don’t even mind the dissenters. I don’t require anyone agree with me. I just appreciate the opportunity to express myself on issues that matter to me. So if you’re reading this: THANK YOU!

The RedState front page is actually made up of some amazing, top notch individuals. I have to say they’re all quite intimidating to me, as they all have some sort of background or experience that qualifies them to write with such authority on matters of the day. Even as I’m interacting with them as a colleague, each day, I still read their work as a fangirl.

My background? I’m just Susan. I’ve worn many hats, from licensed manicurist to nursing assistant, underground heavy metal journalist and band manager, to lumber mill machine operator. Whatever paid the bills.

My degrees are in counseling and Psychology, and both came later in life, opportunities I’m also so grateful to have experienced.

Finally, I’m thankful for my God, my faith.

More than anything else in this life, I look back and see where I was, then look forward and see where I’m going.

Through the good and bad, heartache and struggle, there wasn’t a moment that was wasted, because my God was not giving up on me. He had a plan and a purpose, long before I came to Him.

I rejoice for the mountains in my way, because they helped me appreciate the valleys.

October 24 of this year marks my 13th year as a redeemed child of the Most High God, El Elyon. I can say the last 13 years of my life have been better than the years before. The next 13 will be better, still.

I’m thankful because He did not forget me. He did not let me go. I’m thankful for a platform to share that truth, either here at RedState, over at the Resurgent, or through my books. I’m just planting seeds, while my Father gives the increase.

1 Corinthians 15:57 NKJV“But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.”

And today, my hope is that for my colleagues, all our readership, and their families, that we all experience true moments of grace and fellowship.

We have much to be thankful for in this nation, and in this life we’ve been given. Make the most of it.