Today was an absolutely gorgeous day in Kentucky, as it was in the mid-70s and sunny, which is a little slice of heaven for early December. It feels more like Kentucky Derby time than Christmas time. It made Monday all the better and brighter, and it was a good motivator to spread some sunshine to others and bask in the warmth of it myself. Day three of this venture definitely got off to a fabulous start, and I was more than ready for it.
Thanks to the unexpected gorgeous weather and a small window of opportunity that opened up at the last-minute, I did one of the best things I could possibly do for myself today or any day for that matter. I went trail running. In my blog, “That’s Another Story”, my passion for trail running is detailed in the post, “Happy Trails”, and for me, it really is more than just a form of exercise. It helped save my life.
It really is an excellent work out for my body, mind, baby soul, and spirit, for when I feel the earth beneath my feet and lose myself in thought and music, I come alive and feel like I am “home”. I feel happy, safe, and free when I trail run, and I am able to leave the rest of the world far behind me when I head for the hills. Today was no exception, and it was an unexpected treat that I devoured gladly and gratefully. I definitely am not the fastest or most graceful runner, but I dare say that I am one of the happiest runners ever to hit the dusty trails.
I decided to share an actual treat with someone I know who does not even know it yet, but she soon will when she reads this post. A couple of weeks ago I was approached by Friendly’s restaurant and ice cream shop and asked if I would like to participate in their holiday movement to help “spread Friendlyness”. I would receive two gift cards-one for myself and one for someone “who is always going the extra mile to help others”or someone “who could use a smile or a special treat this holiday season”. We do not have a Friendly’s here in Louisville, so, I researched where the franchises are located and considered a number of wonderful organizations and individuals who deserve a special treat. After much thought, I selected the perfect recipient of both of these gift cards, even though it does not come close to showing her my admiration and gratitude.
Laura and I went to high school together, and thanks to Facebook, we reconnected with one another four years ago. Neither of us could have predicted the paths our lives would take over these past four years, but I am very grateful to have had her walk with me on my own path and to be there with her on her journey. The tears have started to flow as I type this portion of this post, because I am truly touched by what she has done for me, especially in light of the path she has been on. She both has gone the extra mile to help others and could use a smile and a special treat this holiday season.
Several years ago, Laura and I were on the phone discussing a jewelry order when she told me that her younger brother, Robb, had been diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS). If you know anything at all about ALS, then you know it is an absolutely horrible disease for which there is no cure yet, so, my heart sank when I heard the news. Laura shared Robb’s courageous journey through her heartfelt Facebook posts and messages, and Robb continued to share his huge smile, big heart, and warm spirit with his family and friends. Through it all, Laura remained the quintessential big sister who rallied around her little brother and often travelled from her home in Florida to her parents’ home in North Carolina where Robb lived to help care for him, to share a laugh and plenty of smiles, to put her University of Louisville allegiance aside to cheer with him for his beloved University of Kentucky Wildcats, to support fundraising efforts for ALS research, and to simply love him. My heart broke, as did the hearts of all those who know and love Laura, Robb, and the rest of their family, when Robb passed away surrounded by his family last month. So, I know that there is no amount of ice cream or other treats to take away Laura’s grief, but I hope that she, her husband, and her two little boys can share some laughs and funny memories of Robb over some decadent treats. Somehow, that seems fitting, and I think Robb would approve of such fun.
What makes all of this even more remarkable is that in the midst of Robb’s illness and then his death, Laura always has made time to let me know that she is thinking of me during my struggles with anxiety and depression. She made sure to let me know that she cares when she already had much bigger worries to concern herself with. Her encouraging words, funny messages, and genuine concern were graciously sent to me with Laura’s beauty and the Florida sunshine stamped all over them. She has no idea how much that support has meant to me, but I hope that she does now. Laura, what you have given me is truly priceless, but I hope that you all can enjoy some sweet treats and know that you make my life all the sweeter by being in it. Thank you from the bottom of heart, and I love you always!
So, that’s what I did today, and I hope that it made a difference and that it encourages you to do something to make a difference in your own life and in someone else’s life.
Just one thing each day . . .
Categories: Just One Thing Each Day
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