Every Thursday I want to invite the community to get involved in creating a space to fill with gratitude.

If you haven’t tried it as yet now is the time. To look deeply into yourself and rummage around for something, even something that seems very small, to be grateful for. If you already created an area within yourself, go ahead and fill it to overflowing with things you are grateful for. This exercise will effect us positively and will eventually make a shift in our mindset.

During the moments when your mental attitude is in negative mode challenge yourself to uncover a positive aspect in your life. It can be minute. I am breathing. I drank a cup of water. But find it and verbalize it.

The world with gratitude is a much better and nicer place to be.

From the beginning of the week my focus of gratitude was centered around one special event. This Friday is the 9 year anniversary of my checking myself into the emergency room with a full blown panic attack. Nine years since I heard the doctors explain that I was physically sound – but mentally and emotionally facing a challenge of mammoth proportions.It was very depressing to listen to them describe the road that people have to take to recover.

The trek was arduous and at times painful. But it built me to who I am today. I am a new and improved Matana with aspects of my personality that could not exist without my odyssey.Thinking of the journey that I traveled from then until now fills my heart with gratitude.

To G-d who gave me the ability to heal;

For sending me the right people along the way to help me heal myself;

For His holding my hand through the terror I was facing; to all the people who were patient with me when I was difficult to be patient with;

For all those who encouraged me to dig deep into my strength that I didn’t know I had and encourage me to take another step forward.

This whole week was an appreciation of my life. The beginning of the struggle, the journey to recovery and the post depression and anxiety stage.I don’t ever wish on anyone to live through the horrors of depression and panic attacks. But I know that having faced these demons I became a greater person. I thank G-d for sending it my way and helping me with my struggle.

I invite you to share with us what you are grateful for . In your sharing today it can motivate someone to swish around in their swamp of depression and help them rise above and motivate them to find positivity. You may be the one to put a smile on someone else’s face.

You have the ability to be the positive light in someone else’s darkeness.