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Grateful for Every Single Day

This post may come off as a cliché and/or slightly depressing, but I have a lot of feelings today and I’m here to share them! It is Gratitude Friday, after all. Last year around this time, a good friend passed away.  She was my boss at my college summer job who I kept in touch with even after I left to pursue full-time work; she even wrote one of my letters of recommendation for graduate school.  My friend’s death was not unexpected because she battled cancer for ten years.  The Boston Marathon bombings happened about a week before my good friend passed away.  Last summer, my mom was in the hospital for about a month with potentially life threatening kidney problems.  Luckily, my mom is OK (she still is not back to normal, but is at least stable).  With all of these horrible things occurring around me, I was reminded quite often in 2013 of life’s fragility.

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This is the cover of a notebook I saw at Urban Outfitters a long time ago. I still think about what it says often and wish I had purchased it.

I thought of my former employer during my lunch break for some reason yesterday (I actually think about her nearly every day) and was pretty ashamed over my recent grumpiness. All work and no play makes Melissa a dull girl, I guess, because I’ve been a complainer lately 😛  When I came back from lunch, I tried to enjoy myself and remember just how lucky I am to have stable employment, a roof over my head, the privilege of attending graduate school, and my health. With Spring starting to show its face around Chicago, I also remembered that not everyone gets to go outside and enjoy the weather.  How amazing is it that I get to breathe in fresh air and see flowers blooming? After such a long, frigid Winter, Spring feels even better than usual.  How many more beautiful days like that one will I get to experience in my life?

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Super old picture (circa my 20th birthday), but quite possibly the happiest one of me on all the internet 🙂

I was training for a half marathon while my mom was in the hospital last year.  On the weekend of my 10 mile long run, I begrudgingly went outside.  I’m generally pretty reluctant to run (as you can see from posts about my training, haha), but usually enjoy myself once I get started.  That 10 miler was not enjoyable at first, but I had an epiphany around mile 3: “I will not always be able to run, so I should probably make this count.”  MAKE IT COUNT was my motto for the rest of that run.  Why would I train for a half marathon unless the training meant something to me? Not writing a Gratitude Friday post combined with being pretty over worked for two weeks straight turned me into a total grump recently.  I am trying to remember to enjoy every single day because who knows how many I have left? I think it’s important for us to remember that nothing is certain in life, try to look on the bright side, hold loved ones close, don’t sweat the small stuff, and BE GRATEFUL. I’m not trying to be preachy here, but I think I make a good point 😉 What are you grateful for today?