363/365 – people to thank who have had an impact on me. Wow, only 3 more gratitude posts left including this one!! When I started this journey a year ago, I was a little nervous as to if I would have 365 people to thank. I didn’t want it to come down to posts such as thanking my mailman for the flyers he delivers in that they were the ones that led me on to some awesome deal!! ; ) Early on in these posts, I started hearing from friends that so and so had made “the list”. I didn’t understand what that was until I was told that it was my “gratitude list”. That put some pressure on me to say the least as there was now a “list”. I didn’t want it to be a list and I didn’t want it to be some type of contest. Then I heard that some people mentioned they were in the 80s and others were in the 200s! I do have to make it clear that I haven’t had an order as to who I thank and thus whatever number gratitude post it was has no relation to ranking. Most posts are the night before or a couple of days before. Yes, I saved my dad for his birthday as I did with my children for theirs, my mom was first because well she is my mom but save for them and the final two gratitude posts, no one had a day or a number. The list by the end of Sunday is far from complete. I could thank another 365 people who got me to where I am today and this is what today’s gratitude post is about – to all of the people I didn’t name and there are hundreds of you that have impacted me! So many former students, co-workers past and present, family members, inlaws, bosses, professors, fellow students, random strangers, neighbours past and present, friends, backhanded gratitudees (bullies and the like), service providers, celebrities etc, etc – just so many people who have made me who I am and to all of you un-named in this past year, you are part of this gratitude journey just because you were not personally mentioned here doesn’t mean you weren’t recognized by me. To all the new people that will come in to my life, thanking you in advance as some of you will change and influence me in new ways. Thank you to all of you who came along with me on this 365 day journey as well. Your encouragement and support has gotten me to this end point.
259/365 – people to thank who have had an impact on me. Guaranteed you did not know this about me: I was a frat boy! Yup, Delta Kappa Epsilon – the Dekes! This was my dream as I was growing up. I watched tv shows (American tv shows) and saw sororities and fraternities and wanted to be a part of the brotherhood. Growing up geeky, awkward and friendless and then becoming that proverbial swan upon entrance into university, I did what any shunned person did – focused on my looks and used them for popularity! Okay, I kid but yeah, I lost all the baby fat and decided to rush fraternities during my first year as a joke not thinking I was going to be a pledge. But think again and there it was – Delta Kappa Epsilon took me. From loser high school boy to popular first year pledge with instant friends in all years of Commerce (my degree) and high fives all over campus, I was in heaven because up until I never was accepted by my peers and so I ate this attention up. Yes, I was the ethnic quotient for the fraternity as there was no other Indo-Canadian brother but I didn’t consider that – I was in. I went through initiation and all was awesome until I started failing classes left, right and center (yes, 3 classes in first year). Was told by my Commerce advisor that either I focused on my degree and leave the fraternity or change my degree and stick with my brotherhood. Hardest decision ever but I went for education over brotherhood and yes, getting out of a fraternity is no easy task. I’d like to think and am going to think that my stint there was because they liked me and what I brought and the me of 30 years ago needed that so bad and thus, I will never forget the Dekes for letting me be on the inside and popular as that was all I longed for growing up and I finally got it. Do I wish I stayed on? Hell yes but it wasn’t meant to be but that initial acceptance boosted my confidence like no other experience before that and for that, I am forever grateful – thank you my brothers from Delta Kappa Epsilon for changing me from that moment on and letting me believe in myself!