Gratitude & Appreciation

I’m writing this post on American Thanksgiving 2023. To kick off the day I ran my tenth, as in every single year they’ve had the race, even during the pandemic when it was virtual, St Paul Turkey Trot. Today I ran the 10K. They have a 6K option too. 

I ran it with Jenny, Katie, Linda and Tanya – all Run Minnesota friends. It was delightful to see these runner friends and run the 10K together. We used our run-walk-run GymBoss device to time our 45 second run followed by our 15 second walk, over and over until we finished the race.

Eleven races for 2023

Today was my last of 11 races for 2023. I ran four 10-mile races, two half marathons, one full marathon, two 10K races, one Olympic distance triathlon and one Sprint distance triathlon. A most excellent roster of fun athletic events for 2023. 

Alone but not lonely

I’m spending the rest of the day physically alone. I could feel sorry for myself, but I choose not to. Instead, I’m spending time thinking about the things I am grateful for in my life, there is so much! I’m even writing down a few things I appreciate about myself. One of those things is my ability to see the silver lining in bad or difficult situations. 

It’s easy to focus on what isn’t happening or what is lacking in our life. I could wish I had connections with family to spend time with on Thanksgiving. In fact, there are moments on holidays where I do wish I still had good enough relationships with my biological family to spend the holidays with them. 

Then I take a deep breath and let go. That isn’t what is happening in my life at this moment. I deeply breathe into what is, instead of clinging to what I wish was.

Fewer germs to remain healthy

I kindly got invited to join various friends today. The invitations made me smile and feel included. I thanked each of the invitations. And then I declined those invitations. I’m very cautious about my health at this moment. It’s critical that I remain covid, flu and cold free. I need my immune system to focus on fending off this third round of cancer I am dancing with. That requires declining events with groups of people who will not be masked and will be eating food and sharing germs in the process. 

Thankfully I’m part of the Writers Flow Studio Community that is full of people who live in Canada, New Zealand and Europe, in addition to the United States. On Thursdays, I host a 45 minute writing sprint session with this group, and many of the people attending are from those countries, and November 23rd is not Thanksgiving in those countries. Thus I will be with fellow writers, doing writing things for 45 minutes. That brings me joy!

Never give up

Additionally, I got a subscription to Netflix. I don’t own a television and the way I will watch things on Netflix will be on my phone screen. I plan to watch the movie Nyad, about Diana Nyad who at age 63, swam without a wetsuit or a shark cage, from Cuba to Florida. I’ve read the book, listened to the audiobook and I’m excited to see the movie. Her story is very inspirational to me. One of her key mottos is “Never give up!” Perfect way to cap off the day!

Learning, again, to open my heart to receiving

While I watch Nyad, I will be curled up with the beautiful quilt my massage therapist gave me earlier this week. What a lovely surprise it was that Sarah gifted me one of her amazing, colorful, healing quilts. She’s a talented quilter in addition to being an outstanding massage therapist. 

Another thing I’m learning in going through this third cancer experience is that it’s really okay to let people help me and care about me. I’m breathing into that. Accepting this beautiful quilt took courage, as I simply had to allow the love in along with the gift. Opening my heart even more is the gift of this third cancer.

What do you appreciate about yourself?

On that note of love, I hope you are enjoying this holiday weekend if you’re in the United States. If you’re elsewhere, I wish for you a moment of peace and rest. I hope you too think about all the things, or at least one or two things, that you appreciate about yourself. It’s a powerful exercise to consider this question. Say it out loud and affirm who you are in the world.

For sure spend some time outside moving your body!

With love and appreciation for reading this blog,


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4 thoughts on “Gratitude & Appreciation”

  1. So pleased to give! It is amazing what you have accomplished this year, and I so appreciate your hard-won positive and accepting outlook on life.

    • What fun to see you here in the comments Sarah! Your skill has made my athletic accomplishments easier, that’s for sure!

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