Stop. Thank you.

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It’s been a wild couple of weeks.  The kind of wild that makes it really tough to savor the moments, to stop and smell the roses.

Yesterday, it just turned ridiculous.  I laughed like a wild woman as I sat, freezing cold, waiting for the third AAA truck to check up on me and my dead car.  I laughed out loud as the last tow truck showed up and couldn’t fit into the garage.  I laughed and laughed while we drove to the car shop and it was closed.  I laughed and laughed and laughed as I recounted the story to Michael and as we sat across the kitchen table running the numbers to determine which was the smartest, most grown-up decision to make.  I just laughed.

Sometimes, that’s all I can do.

Laughter often teeters on that ever-so-thin-line. So, laughter often gets me so far before I slip into an abyss of “why me?”.

This time, I refuse.  I choose instead to laugh. Then, stop.  Right now, I will stop right here and be thankful.  Right now, I will see and be in all that I have.

I am thankful for having two cars. I am thankful to Michael and that I was able to reach him just in time so that he could pick up the kids from school.  I am thankful that my kids were safe and sound.  I am thankful to have campus services available to help and for having AAA for extra help.  I am thankful to have sought help and received it. I am thankful for the last tow truck driver, Little Eddy, who finally decided to speak to me and then opened his heart about how much he loves his job and how much pride he takes in it, even on a “day like this”. I am thankful to Jonathon, who graciously stayed late on the job so that I could wait in the warm car shop for my ride and for lending me $10 cash so I could tip Little Eddy.  I am thankful for having a warm home to return to and healthy kids who met me at the door waiting for my story.  I am thankful for the cold spaghetti ready and the piles of dishes and laundry that remind me I’m mama. I am thankful for family and friends who offered to help and sent out good vibes. I am thankful for having a job with benefits so that I could take today off so that I could take care of this business. I am thankful to have Michael as a partner in life, as we try to navigate all life throws at us.  I am thankful.

Standing in this place of gratitude, I begin to see the past wild weeks with new eyes, with a new heart.  Right now, at this moment, instead of seeing all the things left undone, I see and feel thankful for wonderful moments that had sadly blurred into that wildness.  I am thankful for a long lunch with a dear friend; weekly run-dates with another; meaningful, soul-searching conversations with many brave and inspiring people; warm snuggles with my growing-up kids; birthday surprises for Meg; pizza and pjs; challenging and stimulating work; forgiving and understanding family; forgiving and understanding friends; leaf piles for jumping; privilege that grants me educational options for my kids; belly-laughs that are loud and result in snorts; Thomas’ first and very impressive student-led parent conference; relevant & many professional development opportunities; teachers who care for my kids and their learning; paints and crayons and creativity; wine; chocolate; writing; Black feminism; Barry Manilow; students with sass and vigor; space for practice and failure; coffee; a walk by moonlight with the kids; laughter.

Thank you.

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