“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” – William Arthur Ward –
Canadian Red Cross workers take part in Canada Day parade in Fort McMurray on July 1 st, 2016 – Carol Morrissey Hopkins photo
Some days it seems incredibly difficult to find anything to be grateful about, but for the most part I can usually find something to be grateful for. Every cloud really does have a silver lining, even if it sometimes seems impossible to find.
I just finished writing an article about the Red Cross and its role in rebuilding Fort McMurray after wildfires decimated areas of the city. I am sure many people are finding it difficult indeed to find that elusive silver lining in the cloud that hangs over many since returning to the city. There are so many frustrations for people trying to restore homes damaged by fire. And for those whose homes were completely destroyed having to deal with insurance clauses, government regulations concerning the safe removal of ash and contaminated soil, and finding a reputable builder must be a nightmare. I cannot even begin to imagine what they must be going through.
But I am grateful for the work of the Red Cross and other humanitarian organizations. The fires that swept through the city made it the largest natural disaster in Canadian history. Nearly 90,000 people were evacuated and while there have been glitches in the system the Red Cross have done an admirable job in assisting people. And the organization promises more help to come. That is something to be thankful for.
The natural disaster that claimed so many homes and businesses did not take any lives – at least not directly – that is huge and something to be very thankful for.
I am grateful for the indomitable spirit and patience of my fellow residents and I am grateful to live here in Fort McMurray where life may be challenging, but is still good. People are reaching out to one another. There are still smiles and laughter amid the frustrations and stress – I am grateful for that. And we live in a country where our fellow citizens have been very generous and kind. And needs are being met, for the most part. There is much to be grateful for.