The Friday Five: Pause for Gratitude

I'll admit it--being positive sometimes doesn't come easy for me. In fact, sometimes I'm way too cynical for my own good. (Although whipping out the perfectly-timed snarky comment on occasion can get a good laugh out of someone.)

I'm also not the most gung-ho person about fitness. Exercise for exercise's sake isn't really fun for me--seems more enjoyable as a side benefit, like checking out some neat trail along a creek and hey, we walked a couple miles--but I'm making a concerted effort to do it more, anyway. I joined a fitness challenge where you get points for how much you exercise. There's pretty much no way I'm ever getting MVP of the week, any week, but for my own personal gratification, I get to see my numbers improve.

(I promise I'm getting to the gratitude point soon.) In case you don't live on this side of the country, let me tell you how bad the weather's been for nearly the past two weeks. RAINY. MISERABLE. DOWNPOURS and THUNDERSTORMS. Ones that make your cat cower in the powder room. Not exactly conducive to getting outdoors to work out. So I've been doing exercise videos. I won't name them, but I have a set of tapes (yes, tapes; I bought them for cheap on eBay a few years back). The instructor's a little goofy (aren't they all, at least a little?), and I believe she comes from a pretty strong religious background. Not that there's a whole lot of that during the workouts. . .

. . . but there is one point on one of the videos where she's making us poor slobs stretch our arms up and hold them there for a moment before whatever muscle-killing move starts, and she wiggles her tan, slender fingers and says, "Now this is where I count my blessings."

Corny, I know. But after a lousy week where I've disowned my academic advisor, dealt with conflicting job schedules, felt horribly guilty about asking to be let out of a $7-an-hour work obligation the day before (because I couldn't get hold of anybody sooner), mourned the loss of a classmate, and just generally spent too many minutes crying ('cause that's what I do) out of frustration/annoyance/anxiety with whatever life is handing me right now. . . that's what I was thinking about, as I was lying on the living room floor, listening to the stereo, waiting for the laptop to boot up, and hearing songs I really love--as if finally something was going right. Virtually throwing my hands up--and then realizing I could be wiggling my fingers.

So here are five things for which I feel gratitude today (or felt, as it's pretty late):

1. I mentioned it earlier, but I'll say it again: good music. Especially when the radio seems to be picking it out for me. Practically 30 minutes straight of Killers songs back-to-back? Radio, I never knew how much you cared before. (About an hour or so later, they're playing one of my favorites again. Love it.)

2. A slew of great comments and e-mails from good people yesterday and today. I have nice innernetz friends.

3. A correctly calculated paycheck (albeit small) today. (That would not be from my main job, as we know from past experience.)

4. News of good interviews for several job-seeking friends. I'm really excited for them and hope they all work out.

5. Lip gloss. It comes in all sorts of pretty colors and tastes good. (Men, you are excused from agreeing with me on this point.) I have Champagne Fizz on right now.

***Bonus*** a train ticket to see my sister Memorial Day weekend. Kind of a birthday-BBQ bash for her. It's really cool of her to want me to come and hang with her and her friends.

Some of them probably seem trivial, but every little thing counts. Hope you have some moments of gratitude this weekend. (And no rain so Bingley can cook out!)


Anonymous said…
I'm seeing a trend of "gratitude" posts recently. I've been writing a weekly Thankful Thursday post where I discuss at least one thing I'm thankful for. Kris ( recently recognized her 100 joys. And I just got here from Ashley (Our Little Apartment) who was talking about recognizing her own success. I think when we as a people are struggling we're more likely to be thankful for what we have. It seems like when we have everything, we always want more. Good post :)
Lindsay said…
I've definitely been more positive of late--perhaps because things seem to be working out for the first time in a very, very long time.

I feel like I fail at femininity. I have used lipgloss a handful of times in my life. (Really!) I basically just use chapstick--but it does add a little bit of color. But, uh, yeah. I figure why bother? I'd need a lot more than chapstick to improve my looks! Hehe.
Annie Coe said…
Glad things are on the upswing. gratitude always makes me feel better. Nothing is too trival :-).
Mr. Bingley said…
I did indeed cookout on Saturday! Made some yummy ribs...
Kate P said…
Kitkat--thanks for coming by! When all else fails, we have to look for the silver linings in life, don't we?

Lindsay--trust me, you are very cute and feminine, lip gloss or no. :)

Annie--excellent point! Everything counts when you're counting your blessings.

Bingley--all right, you got a cookout in!

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