I feel guilty, my friend. I'm told I should be grateful just to be alive, ALL else is gravy. (A bf put a gun in my mouth 30 years ago, said he'd kill me, changed his mind. I ran.) But, I am dissatisfied, living with a mellow(ish) alcoholic, w/little about my life I actually enjoy except the kids and dog. Thus I hide on Tumblr. Should I try harder to be grateful for what I have or is being grateful to be alive enough? It's hard to be grateful for some of this life. Thank you, Sam.
This dissatisfaction you feel is dukkha, suffering as the Buddha describes it. It is restlessness, a vague worry about the future, a constant feeling of anxiety as if something bad is just around the corner. Mostly it is fear.
The fact is that what you have can be taken from you at any time. Family, home, health can all be gone in a flash. So, we cherish what we have been given. It is okay to seek to improve your situation if you wish. Just bear in mind one very important thing and that is that most often when we think it is external things stealing our joy it is really something within us.
Live for this very moment and breathe the air, savor your tea, kiss the kids, pet the dog and give the alcoholic your love freely and not because he “deserves it”. He drinks to numb his own suffering. Open up. Let yourself blossom. Be kind. Be loving. Be compassionate. Do these things and be fearless.