21 Days of Gratitude Day15: “Don’t worry, be happy”

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As we enter this new year, I want to take the next three weeks to make daily posts about things I am grateful for. There was an old hymn I heard growing up called “Count your blessings”. So since I believe gratitude begets blessings, (and we all could use a little more of that,) Come with me as we go on this journey of thankfulness. 

Back in junior high, I had this girl come up to me completely out of the blue, and say to me ‘everyone says you are a worrywart is that true?’ While I have to admit it’s a very strange thing to say to a person (especially someone who doesn’t know me), I’d also have to own up to it.

I was a ‘worrywart’ and a big one at that. I worried about everything: was everything going to be okay when I grew up? Was I going to end up alone? Would I have a job I liked? You name it, I was probably worried about it. Mostly though, I worried about death. I worried I would die young and never live to become an adult. I felt like somehow I’d get ‘robbed’ of living past childhood.

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I spent so much of my youth worrying about this. During my senior year of high school, I dreamed I wouldn’t graduate. same thing during my senior year of college. you get the picture. But that all changed. A long time ago I was at the cemetery putting flowers on the grave of one of my teachers when I saw a tombstone. The person who had died was 23. I had just turned 24. I realized that no matter what happens that person won’t have the time I have. I had an epiphany that worry, fear can be such wasted and selfish emotions.

I think of all the people I have known who left this world way too young, I’m not any better than they were. I can find no justice or logic as to why I am here and they are not. This knowledge humbles me and compels me to appreciate every atom of my life. I don’t know for sure what holds it in place but I’m so grateful it does. I deeply appreciate the time I have been given in this life and hope to never let a second be wasted.

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