Gratitude – My Message for the Holidays

This past year has been a strange one, a tumultuous year for many friends and loved ones, myself included. I had not intended to write this post at the beginning of the month, but then something strange happened.

I took a shower.

No, that’s not the strange part.

The strange part happened during it. My muse opened the door and stepped in. He’s done this before, but not in a while. I should have known. He tends to show up when I least expect him. On this particular visit, we had a long conversation. It started off as more of a monologue on my part. I rhymed off all the things I had to do, my gift list, my dinner list, this list and that list. The lists went on and on, and somewhere between the shampoo and body scrub, he reminded me to clean out my ears because I wasn’t listening to him.

He’s kind of pushy that way, but I complied, and that’s when he said I needed to blog about gratitude.

I don’t know about you, but sometimes in the frenzy of “doing,” I tend to forget just “being.” When I cannot take the time to reflect, then it’s difficult to be grateful.

Another year was coming to an end. It deserved its own time apart from all the things that still had to be done.

A time-out was important.

He was right.

* * *

2013 went by in a flash, and the years have gone by quicker as I’ve gotten older. When the end of the year approaches, it speeds up, almost as if we want this one to be over with, so we can start anew. In an effort to let a difficult year slip into oblivion, I thought the best thing was to not even write about it, but of course, I could not. Life, like my muse, always shows up on its own schedule—at an inconvenient time. I didn’t feel like writing this. I had a million other things to do. Yet here I am.

So … gratitude.

Around this time of year, the question does not tend to be: “What are you grateful for?”

For Canadians, that was back in October. Americans had their Thanksgiving less than a month ago.

No, this holiday demands to know: “What do you want?”

Everywhere I turn, I see the lure of things that people want.

For me, there’s little I want that is material in nature.

Stay with me … this is going off on a tangent but I’ll circle back. I promise.

* * *

I visited the John Lennon exhibit in New York City several years ago at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, Annex, which no longer exists. The exhibit consisted of all things Lennon that one would expect—music, memorabilia, pictures, albums. I’m a big fan of John Lennon, but I don’t remember anything specific from that show, except for one thing—a crumpled brown paper bag.

The exhibit was marked: “Patient’s Belongings,” and it contained all of John Lennon’s belongings after he was killed, his body processed, and his clothing removed by the coroner.


That image has stayed with me, and I saw the exhibit four years ago. For me, it was a metaphor for life, no matter who we are. Though Lennon lives on through his music, he left this world as we will all leave it, with nothing of value we can take with us.

For many of us, who we touch, love, spend time with, and share of ourselves will be our lasting legacy.

With a circle of friends that extends out from a small family, I consider the readers and writers whom I’ve connected with over the past several years as important in my life.

This season, I will spend time thinking of you and how you have enriched my life, how material goods will never replace what you mean to me. Even the occasional email you send my way is worth more than any diamond, which to me is worthless, so don’t send me one.

In this fast world where we are sometimes overburdened with too many tasks and too little time, I never want to be someone who doesn’t take the time for those I love most. That includes the readers of my blog and books.

Thank you.

In the end, none of us will be defined by the ‘stuff’ we have, but by the kindness we’ve shown, the love we’ve shared, and more than anything, by the gratitude we’ve shown others.

Wishing all love, warmth, health, and happiness,

~ eden ♥

xmas msg 2014


Filed under Revelations & Humor

21 responses to “Gratitude – My Message for the Holidays

  1. Thank you, Eden, for perspective and lovely words, as always. And best wishes to you and yours as well. ~C


  2. A timely reminder, Eden, of what’s important in life. Thanks for being my friend! Much happiness and good health in the coming year, and you’re constantly in my thought too, especially at this time of the year! Still savouring the cookies you sent a couple of years ago :)!


  3. You are truly a shining light in my life, Eden. Your support and love has made even the most difficult of moments easier to bear. Much love to you and yours this holiday season–and always. ❤

    P.S. Always listen to your muse, especially when he shows up naked in the shower 🙂 xoxoxo


    • Annetta, you will always shine brightly in my life. As for my muse, he does join me naked. Hehe, funny how I chose to conjure him up in the shower. Much love to you and your family xox


  4. Damn. You got me all misty-eyed.

    Straight to the heart.


    • You are a doll, Tim. And thank you so much for reblogging. I don’t think you get misty eyed too often. I’m honored, and so happy we are connected. Have a wonderful Christmas and New Year, sweet man.


  5. Well said, my friend. Looking forward to your next book and continued thrashings by your hand at Scrabble. 😉


    • Alex, my dear Scrabble mate, friend, and one of the first men I connected to in this crazy profession. Thank you for your ongoing support, friendship, and wisdom xox
      Best to you and your family.


  6. Pingback: Gratitude – Eden Baylee’s Message for the Holidays | | T. W. Dittmer

  7. John Dolan

    Lovely sentiments, beautifully expressed.
    Now if only I can persuade my muse to visit me naked in the shower. Maybe if I let her keep her hat on …?
    John x


    • Mr Dolan, I’ve read your book, Everyone Burns. I know the trouble your muse can get into with you in the shower … with or without a hat. 😉
      Thank you for your comment, lovely Englishman. It’s been a great pleasure meeting you.
      All the best to you and your family for the holidays and 2014.
      eden xox


  8. Eden, beautiful sentiments, compelling post. Thank you for sharing.



  9. I’m grateful for a lot right now and you are up there at the top of my list, Eden. You’ve been a friend when i needed one most — on more than one occasion — giving just the right nudge or setting the world on fire, whichever was needed.

    much love,



    • Max! I’m so happy to see you on Christmas day. How I’ve missed you, my Southern Prince. Please know you will always be on my list.
      Big hugs to you, Trish, and your beautiful boys.
      Merry Christmas.
      Much love xox


  10. Perfectly said, Eden. I hope you had a good Christmas.


  11. Dear Eden, with 3 E’s. As usual I am very late. Time seems to pass me by many times. You are someone I consider a precious friend and you are always there. Thank you doesn’t seem to be enough and I want you to know you mean much to me.


    • My lovely Dannie, so good to know you are back nice and warm in Thailand. Time goes by but you are never far from my thoughts, so don’t worry. And friends never need to thank each other for friendship. I am fortunate to know you, and very happy we are friends.

      I wish only the best for you in 2014, xox


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