**This is dedicated to those I love who have fought and continue to fight tough battles.  You are brave and you are capable.**

As I contemplate the day ahead of me; I admit I am not very excited.  There are no lunch plans, no projects to tackle (well, that’s not completely true) and no pressing errands to run and it is shaping up to be a stinky day.  I feel a little sad.  The rain is falling and the blah is creeping in and settling into my pores.  I sit and reminisce about the recent anniversary celebration of 15 years of marriage and the upcoming birthday of my oldest.  He will be nine and I am not even sure how that is possible.  It seems like yesterday I gave him his first bath up on the bathroom counter in our house in Michigan.  Ahh, memories.  And then I just keep going… We moved to Atlanta a year ago.  A year ago!  Two weeks ago I was brave and tried something I have always wanted to do but had never tried.  I rocked paddle boarding, if I do say so myself, and I can’t wait to do it again!  A few months ago my husband and I decided to try being nice to each other and its going famously – I highly recommend it.  It has been three years since I heard my Grandpa’s voice.  Its been six months since my dad’s successful cancer surgery.  And ___ years since I graduated high school.

The day began to look a bit brighter all of a sudden because I realized that I can choose for this day to be a celebration of a moment, an accomplishment – this day is significant because it is the anniversary of something.  There is much to live for and much to take notice of, living any other way does not honor the progress made, the losses and the wins, or the trials that I have survived.  This day could be the anniversary of the first time I felt comfortable in my own skin or it could be the day when that phone call changed life as I knew it.  Perhaps it is the anniversary of the day I decided that something had to change and so I went ahead and made it happen.  Or maybe I recall a low time in my life and that triggers the reminder that I am through that and that I came through it because family rallied around me.

This reminiscing feeds today – it is motivation to pursue growth, best, truth, life.  There’s many reasons to soak up this day, embrace it and squeeze all the life out of it I possibly can.  Too many times I choose the alternative and I focus on where I am not, what I don’t have, what I haven’t accomplished and I focus on the dreams that remain unfulfilled.  This mindset leads to a dry, dead place of loneliness and self-defeat where the wind blows and nothing grows.  To choose this mindset not only leads to dryness but it also betrays the good choices I’ve made and the accomplishments that I’ve achieved.  It’s not a great place to be and once I am there, its really hard to leave.

I choose, instead, to recognize the journey; to hold up the moments when my heart felt full, whether it was joy or sorrow, a sense of accomplishment or defeat.  When revisited, with the proper perspective, these remembrances fuel the choices I make today – I will celebrate and live life as one who has overcome and one who has much to offer.  The moments that I ponder, the accomplishments and the losses – both big and small – remind me that I am brave and capable.  The choices I make today honor where I’ve been, what I’ve been through and those who love me.  I will choose a day of promise, of remembrance and celebration, because today is significant.