Thankful Thursday: Learning Gratitude from a Toddler

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Sue Faith Levy is a motivational speaker and top blogger from South Africa. As an aspiring author and philanthropist. Sue's big dream is to spread her messages of hope and gratitude to women around the world with her motivational speeches and inspirational messages. If you aren't sure how to comment on this story, click here.

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Thankful Thursday: Learning Gratitude from a Toddler Inspirational Quote from Epicurus

Epicurus once wrote,

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for.”

Waking up at 5:30 a.m. by my toddler to watch her favorite TV cartoon, “Dora the Explorer” is hardly the way I want to wake up on Sunday, but I do it anyways. I get up and stumble into the living room to turn on an episode while she sits down all pretty, rubbing her eyes as she begins to sing the opening tune to the show.

I, on the other hand, doze off almost as soon as I sit down. In what seems like seconds to me, I faintly hear a “Mommy” and “Daddy” in the distance. Aliya is letting me know that the first episode of Dora is complete and it’s time for the next one. This goes on for about three episodes until I eventually wake up.

I always start our day with, “Morning my angel” and usually I get no reply from her. As a toddler, my daughter is often now fixated on whatever has caught her attention, and this morning it is Dora. She has no time for me. Her ability to ignore me at such a young age makes me laugh.

This Sunday morning is a bit different though. Out of the blue I suddenly feel her two little hands on my face as I am contemplating the day before me from my view on the couch. Aliya looks at me and turns my head to the left and plants a big fat kiss on my cheek. She then turns my face to the right and does the same.

She finally turns my head so that I face her as she stares straight into my eyes. I’m almost intimidated by my toddler daughter staring at me so intently. What is this all about?

She kisses me on the lips with a loud, “Mwah.”

I am speechless as she jumps down for the next episode of Dora the Explorer.

Right there, in that moment, I got the message. After a week of her being ill and me feeling exhausted, it was her way of saying,

“Thank You Mommy. You are enough.”

Kids can teach us a thing or two about being grateful. Her staring in my face was her way of articulating in silence just how wonderful I am to her and how grateful she is to have me as her mother. She sealed it with a loud “Mwah” just to make sure I understood.

There I was learning gratitude from my daughter.

Thankful Thursday: Learning Gratitude from a Toddler - Aliya and her smile

I pondered how the world could be if we all showed gratitude to each other in such a manner. What if we showed ourselves the kind of gratitude my toddler offered me in that moment?

When was the last time you made someone else feel like they were enough? When was the last time you felt that YOU were enough?

I realized in all the changes that I’ve recently made that I need to stop and be grateful. I need to behave more like my toddler and find joy in the moment. I need to remember that I am enough.

Because my little girl said so.

And toddlers know everything.

Remember this week to live in a space of gratitude and watch magic happen for your dream and in your life.  You are enough.


  • Lameez Williams

    awes she’s adorable & yes its so true just amazing how kids teaches us2!! thank u for sharing this lovely post:)

  • Lovely. Your daughter is just too adorable….like you.

  • kellyswanson1

    Beautiful post Sue. It’s those little moments that we often skip right by. Thanks for reminding me to stop and enjoy the moment.