First, I am so thankful that Kay has fought her cancer and is feeling well enough to consider coming back to work next school year. It was a rough year for her, and I am so happy that all the prayers you sent her way have been answered. Selfishly, I am so happy to have her back as my running partner, but I am more thankful that she is healthy and back to her amazing self. Thank you all for your support through this difficult time in her life.
Lately, I have been consistently working out, but not with the same enthusiasm I have in the last year. At these times I feel I am very lucky to have multiple groups of friends that enjoy different kinds of exercise. Rarely do I have to work out by myself, because I know someone in my network will be doing some kind of exercise pretty much every day of the week. I do have the motivation to text my friends daily to make plans for what I will do each day. This ensures that when I get up in the morning, even if I want to roll over and go back to sleep, because I know someone is counting on me to work out with them, I work out anyway. I am so thankful that when I am not motivated, I have friends that remind me why I love to run, bike, and swim.
I am so appreciative of the community I live in and how this area makes it so much fun to get out and play on a daily basis. For example, yesterday I asked some friends if they would like to come and run trails with me this morning. As we set out, I had a route in mind that would take us through some trails with small rolling hills. It would end at the Murrieta City Hall where there is a touching display called the Field of Honor that has hundreds of flags displayed to honor our veterans. After a couple miles, we decided it would be more fun to add a run/hike up the hills behind my house before heading to City Hall. So instead of going straight, we turned right to run through a meadow, up a pretty steep windy hiking path, and made a brief stop at the top to take a picture on a huge rock overlooking Murrieta. I am so thankful that there are so many amazing places I can run and play with my friends! This route made almost 8 miles of running so enjoyable! I can't believe I can have so much fun working out.
I am also thankful for the kind people who work in my community. At the end of our run today, we decided to run to Terry's Coffee Trader in Old Town Murrieta. Luckily, one of us had brought a credit card, because we were thirsty and quite hungry after two hours of running. However, after we all had our drinks and a couple muffins to share, we realized that Terry only accepts cash. Terry just told us that we could pay him next time--what kind of store owner is that generous and trusting? Of course, I felt so bad that I made Sean come down and pay him right away, but it is people like Terry that make me love living in Murrieta so much.
On this Veteran's Day weekend, I am so thankful for living in a country where I have the freedom to have an education, where I can choose the church I want to attend, and where my children have the opportunity to become whatever their hearts desire. I often forget just how lucky I am--especially as a woman. I am offered so many more freedoms and opportunities than women in other countries. I can wear what I want, run and exercise where I desire, and I am lucky I have these choices I can make on my own. I often take my freedom for granted, and I am thankful to be reminded that my freedom is possible because of others that make the sacrifice for me.
On a lighter note, thanks to all of you, my friends and family, for keeping me accountable by reading my blog on a weekly basis. Knowing I need to confess to you each week keeps me on the straight and narrow, and I am very thankful for that!