Be Thankful for What it Ain’t! 1

Sometimes you can’t be glad for what it is, but you can definitely be glad for what it ain’t.  My mother passed this philosophy on to me from my great grandfather, known as Papa Pillow in our family. 

“Be thankful for what it ain’t.”

Straightforward and accurate, Papa Pillow’s phrase conjures up a list of things that I’m grateful not to be grappling with:

  • Poor health (at least at this writing);
  • Devastating weather (again, on this day at this time);
  • Trouble in mind;
  • Anger;
  • Envy (I succumb to this for a quick minute every now and again but it quickly passes through my system);
  • Hunger;
  • Thirst;
  • Lack of shelter;
  • Hate;
  • Turmoil

I could go on and on but I’ll stop right here because I know y’all know what I’m talkin’ ’bout.


About Candelaria Silva

Candelaria Silva-Collins is a marketing, community outreach and programming consultant; writer; and trainer/facilitator who lives in Boston, Massachusetts. She has designed and facilitated workshops on a wide variety of topics including communication, facilitation, job search skills, team building, and parenting issues. She currently coordinates the Community Membership Program of the Huntington Theatre Company. Her work as Director of ACT Roxbury was profiled in several publications, including The Creative Communities Builders Handbook. Candelaria’s children’s stories, short stories, essays and reviews have been published in local and national publications and she is an active blogger. Her publications include the booklets, Handling Rejection; Pushing through Shyness: Networking Tips when You’re Shy, Slow to Warm Up or Just don’t Feel you Belong; and Real Questions about Sex & Relationships for Teens: A Discussion Guide for Parents. She has served on the boards of Goddard College, Wheelock Family Theatre, Boston Foundation for Architecture, and Discover Roxbury. She is currently Chair, Designators of the Henderson Foundation.

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One thought on “Be Thankful for What it Ain’t!

  • Jim

    This is one of those habits of mind that are so clearly true yet so hard to carry out when I’m feeling down. Yesterday’s rain for example, thankfully wasn’t snow, but I know the snow is coming Friday and it’s going to be heavy and deep. Thankfully I have a warm house, for now.