12 Things I’m Thankful For December 25, 2007Posted by Teen Atheist in family, friends, issues.
Tags: atheism, Christmas, family, friends, media, religion, television
So, it’s Christmas, and despite all the shit I’ve been put through recently, I still think that it’s a time to be happy and to reflect on the things that made 2007 a spectacular year for me. I figured that 12 was a Christmassy enough number, so here are the top 12 things I’m thankful for this year:
12. My 18th birthday celebration (best birthday ever)
It was the first birthday I got to spend with just me and my friends, because in previous years I’d tried to ask but would invariably have my father try to guilt-trip me, all “she doesn’t want to spend it with us.” This year, I guess I’d finally earned it. I had an amazing time, being with people I loved who treated me like a queen. I was smiling the whole time.
For a sitcom, this one sure makes me cry an awful lot (damn you, John C. McGinley and your out-of-this-world acting skills!). I’m especially thankful for this line by Dr. Kelso:
“Nothing in this world that is worth having comes easy.”
It’s become my personal motto, and it’s helped me through a lot of the challenges I’ve faced this year.
10. Clothes shopping and spa trips
Shallow as it may sound, shopping and getting my hands and feet pampered never fails to brighten my day no matter how down in the dumps I’m feeling. They’re my favorite vices.
I still refuse to apologize for standing up for gay people, but it’s not like Fred was a horrible friend otherwise. I do owe him for being one of the few friends who could truly empathize with me and be there for me whenever I was in a bad place emotionally. We’re still on bad terms with each other (and I still think he’s a little off his rocker), but I am still thankful for what he’s done for me over the years.
8. The LGBT Pride March
Special thanks to everyone who encouraged me and gave me the testicular fortitude to go through with it. Through the march, I met a lot of amazing LGBT people, like Justin and Emmett, who truly inspire me. I felt so proud of myself for standing up for others’ rights, and I would gladly do it again next year. In fact, I’ve already signed up for a couple of local gay-straight alliances, and I plan to be an even louder voice in support of LGBT rights in college.
7. Greg Berlanti
This TV wunderkind, the creator of Everwood, Brothers & Sisters, Dirty Sexy Money and Eli Stone, is exactly the kind of person I aspire to be like when I’m older. It’s my personal ambition to become a television screenwriter (and clearly, I’m siding with the WGA on the writer’s strike), and if I ever achieve the dream of creating my own drama series, I hope mine could be as significant as his shows, which are not only well-written and entertaining, but are a huge step forward in terms of LGBT visibility on television.
6. Halloween Party 2007
It was a huge step forward for me in becoming an out-and-proud atheist, and I’m thankful for having such open-minded and accepting friends like Darren, Haley and Steve. This experience gave me the courage to come out to Martha, as well as the new friends I’ve made this year. I learned that I don’t have to be afraid, because not everybody is a narrow-minded bigot, and there are people out there who aren’t quick to judge.
5. Chris Jericho, Jeff Hardy and CM Punk
I was a huge wrestling fan back in 2004, but the shitty storylines (Hi, Vince McMahon!) caused me to eventually fall out of love with it shortly after. The return of my two favorites, snarky, witty Chris Jericho and fearless, gravity-defying Jeff Hardy (and yeah, he’s so cute) prompted me to give sports-entertainment a second chance, and it’s provided me a sweet escape from the frustrations of everyday life. (Okay, okay, I sometimes like to picture certain people getting pummeled by these ass-kickers.) CM Punk, thank you for being both one of the biggest stars of ECW and openly atheist. It’s cool to have someone out there to prove to wrestling fans that not all atheists are evil, beer-swilling, baby-eating monsters. You rock.
4. My family
For still paying for my stuff and all that. I’m still angry, but I understand what I owe.
3. My beliefs
Words can’t express how glad I am to have discovered atheism this year. I feel so enlightened, and everything’s just a little bit clearer now. It’s also helped me realize that everything I do and everything I become is all up to me. I’m also glad to have reached out to the online community, who have not only helped me in further understanding my atheism (though you don’t have to be so elitist about it — just because I didn’t know who Richard Dawkins was doesn’t make me any less of an atheist :P), but have also given me tons of useful advice for my personal life and my relationship with my family. Even though you don’t know me, I’m happy that you care.
2. My ambition
There have been times (usually after big fights with my parents) when I’ve wanted to off myself just so I could save them the damn college tuition money that they won’t shut the fuck up about, but I know I’ll never go through with it because I have big dreams that I want to stick around to accomplish. And if all goes well, I will have achieved the following feats: get a job and move out within the next year; graduate with a degree in Dramatic Writing from NYU Tisch; write an article for Rolling Stone magazine (yes, I realize it’s gotten a little starfuckery these days, but I still think it rocks); create my own drama series for the ABC network; settle down in a nice loft in Greenwich Village. A girl can dream!
1. My friends
If there’s anything that’s gotten me through this year in one piece, standing tall and still smiling, it’s the support I’ve gotten from my friends. The ones I just met this year through parties and events, my high school clique, and my grade school friends — everyone’s invaluable to me. People like Tyler who made me realize that I’m not the crazy one in this family. People like Camille, who let me know I’m loved, even on those days when my home doesn’t feel like home (read: everyday). People like Alice, the devout Catholic, who give me hope in the possibility of theists and nontheists getting along wonderfully. Not only do they let me know that I’m worth something, but they make me feel like I’m invaluable. And I couldn’t thank them enough for that.