Being Grateful 10/5/12

 I read something on facebook this morning that literally brought me to tears.  My aunt posted that some friends of hers are having to take their 12 year old daughter that has been battling cancer off life support today.  I hurt for the parents and I hurt for the little girl who was robbed of her chance to experience a full life.  Sometimes we hear about or read things like that and ask “why” and sometimes it even makes us angry that such a horrible fate could fall upon such a young, beautiful life.  I’ve learned that sometimes in life terrible, tragedies happen to good people and it’s so far beyond our understanding and comprehension that asking those questions doesn’t seem to provide any answers.  I truly believe in God and his mercy and believe that he is holding a special place in his kingdom for this young soul and that his reasons for taking her from her family are not mine or anyone else’s to try to understand.   

Its times like this that I then am able to look at my own life and realize how tragedy could strike at any moment and realize how truly blessed I am.  Most days we’re so consumed with our own thoughts and our own minor problems and pain that we rarely take the time to step back and realize how great things truly are. 

 I spoke to my boss this morning.  I was nervous to talk to him, not because he’s intimidating but I wanted to let him know that I was interested in pursuing another position that opened up recently in our company.  Since I know my boss, I figured he would be on board and encouraging, however his response was even better than I expected and I left his office feeling more confident than I went in.  Blame it on the pregnancy hormones but at that moment I just felt so fortunate.  Not just because of this, but because of all the wonderful things that I so easily over look. 

 I’m pregnant.  There is a new life forming inside of me that’s made up of half of my genes and half of my husbands.  This in and of itself is such a wonderful miracle that I do feel blessed for every single day.  I worry about the health/safety of this little baby every single day.  So much of it is completely out of my control, so each day that I wake up and everything seems to be ok, or every time I feel little kicks and movement I’m grateful.  Its true that sometimes with my running especially, pregnancy has caused some frustrations and I do look forward sometimes to after the baby is born, but I really do love this time too and feel like I will miss it a bit when its over.

 I have a great husband.  Lately, he’s been bothering me a bit (and admittedly a lot of that has to do with the pregnancy too) but even when he is bothering me, I still love him more than I can describe and I know the other types of men/husbands/father’s that are out there and I’m thankful.  So many women go through this all alone and some women have fathers of their children that don’t even want the baby, so I really am so fortunate that Tim is the father of my baby.

 I have great friends and family.  Friends and family can also be a huge source of stress, and I don’t think there’s anyone with a family or close friends that could say this isn’t true.  But they’re also a great source of support and knowing they’ll be there for you no matter what is truly priceless.  Its true that we are the absolute hardest on those we love the most and there’s comfort in knowing that harsh words said can easily be forgiven and no love lost.  I know that my friends and family are supportive of me and that they will care for and love my child and for that I am grateful.

 My job.  Some days I get really frustrated and stressed from my job, but deep down I know that’s because I really care and ultimately I am so thankful.  I work at a company that I truly believe in.  Right now with the state the of the country, many large companies are seen as corrupt and evil money making machines that care only about the bottom line.  I say with absolute conviction that my company is not anything like that.  Sure, we have to make money, that’s how businesses continue to thrive and grow.  The company will not under any circumstances sacrifice quality in order to make profits.  I truly believe that.  I also believe that this company cares about its employees.  There are many things that our company has done in my short two years here that have made me come to believe that statement.  They are moving towards more flexible schedules, they take survey’s to determine employee satisfaction, they provide opportunities for learning and training and advancement, when the company does well they give back to the employees and also to the community and reward employees for doing the same thing.  Currently, they are constructing a new building to keep up with our growth and they decided to add a fitness facility.  They didn’t have to do that. 

 Besides the company itself, I happen to work for a really great boss.  After what I went through with a previous boss I know how much of a difference this makes on my health, my happiness and my satisfaction with life.  A previous manager had a much different reaction when I told her I was interested in pursuing other positions within the company.  She acted defensive and questioned why I would want to leave the department and actually threatened to not provide me with additional job training because she didn’t know if I was a worthwhile investment for the department.  The fact that my boss not only supports my growth, but is willing to speak on my behalf is something that I have to be so grateful for.

 I have great co-workers.  I honestly can’t say that I’ve ever had better.  We don’t meet up for happy hour after work or get together outside of work, but I’m ok with that.  It means so much that we all treat each other with respect and I truly feel like we have each other’s backs.  There’s only one other person that has my same role and I actually really like him and want him to do well and don’t feel the need to compete with him and don’t think that he tries to compete with me.  It makes the work week (which really you spend more time at work then you do at home every week) a lot less stressful.

 Obviously, besides these great things I have many more things I’m grateful for too.  My health is very high on that list, both physical and mental, as well as having a solid roof over my head and food on my plate and access to clean water and showers and all of these things that truly are necessities that some people don’t have. 

 This is very off topic from running, but I felt I had to write it nonetheless because of all the complaining I sometimes do, I want to remember to take the time to truly feel how great things are at the same time. 

 One last thought to close this out.  Yesterday I ran 5 miles on my lunch hour and it had been a rainy morning.  By the time I ran however, the sun had come out, it was a nice 67 degrees and the running trail was littered with wet, colorful leaves.  The trees were filled with color and the sun peaked through just enough to make everything sparkle and glow and it was truly a beautiful sight.  It made me happy to be out running, to be breathing in the air and sights of nature.  There is so much beauty in this world and I love how running sometimes opens my eyes to it in a way that I can’t miss it.

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