Today’s Reason: Thankfulness

Feeling somewhat recovered from the gluttony that is Thanksgiving, I can finally sit back and consider all the blessings that surround me- and what a great feeling that is!  Rather than feeling full of food, I feel full of love, happiness, and optimism for the impending new year.  (Usually, I’m not quite so sappy but we had such a great Thanksgiving that I just can’t help it!)

Foremost, I am thankful for my amazing family- these are the people that I love unconditionally and give meaning to my life.  My husband, my children, and my in-laws are the ones I know I can count on and vice versa.  In my life, family comes first and I am so lucky to be surrounded by so much love.

True Love is: my son, hubby, and daughter

We Are Family: sis-in-law, bro-in-law, hubby again, mom-in-law, and cousin-in-law

The family that camps together, stays together: my father-in-law and other mother-in-law on the very right

I am also incredibly thankful for my friends- they love me for who I am and give me the honesty, support, good times, and mutual respect I require from my relationships.  Earlier this year, I had an awakening of sorts and after 37 years of life finally realized  (I’m still learning, I admit it) that it is way more important to have just a few core friends that you can really trust and be yourself with than a ton of friends that you barely know and have to work to impress.  As a result, I have been putting a lot more time and effort into the people that give the same time and effort back to me- it is such a good feeling to know who your true friends are. These are the people I know I can count on no matter what and we do not judge each other for our faults, we encourage the good, share our deepest thoughts and dreams, and provide succor (along with the occasional adult beverage) without even being asked.

First neighbors, then best friends: the couple on the left, Andrea & Josh

The most awesomest BFFs ever rocking our LBDs! From left to right: me, Dana, Lea, Jen and Amy (red eyes mean more love)

I am, of course, also thankful for my team.  I joined Team in Training not knowing anyone or what to expect but after just 5 months, I knew that I had made friends for life.  They give me the support and encouragement I need to accomplish my goals as well as the confidence to dream big (hence marathon #2).  While nothing will ever come close to the first time, I look forward to this one plus many future seasons with Team in Training.  I can’t tell you what a pleasant surprise it was and how happy it makes me to have found a team as stellar as this- I feel honored to be a part of it all and while I severely miss the group from last season, I intend to make this season just as fabulous.

Team Driven ready to do the damn thing at the Nike Women's Marathon

More of The Team trying to forget the damn thing at the Us Half "race"

And my inspiration, the amazing Coach Al (photo credit: fellow TNTer, Geri)

Finally, I am thankful for my ability.  For so long I felt like a wanna-be but now, I can say with complete confidence that I Am A Runner and am very proud of myself. I set my sights on a goal and did the work it took to get there- what a satisfying feeling that is!  I love running and the places it can take you (physically and emotionally). The running itself can be hard but my life is certainly easier and more fulfilled because of it.  I don’t know why that is, exactly, but I don’t ask questions, I just lace up my shoes and salivate a little, ready to taste that feeling of freedom and pure joy that comes from a really good run.

Another marathon pic??? How did that get in there... :-p

And with that, whadya know, I’m off for a run…

How was your thanksgiving this year?  What are some of the things you are most thankful for? 

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