This will be a slightly unusual post for me.  I was so incredibly moved and fascinated by the Diane Sawyer special about Gabby Giffords, the Arizona senator who was tragically shot  in the head on January 8, 2011. I’ve had that special on my mind since the second I began watching it. I thought a good way to express my thoughts would be right here in the ol’ blog.

Not only has Gabby’s incredible journey struck me as nothing short of a miracle, but I sort of feel a weird universe alignment to her incident as it happened the day that Walt was born. I distinctly remember Chris reading me CNN updates while I was in labor, and during our stay at the hospital the news was fixated on this terrible event.  Since that day, Gabby has beaten every odd in the book. It’s amazing she’s even alive, but she walks and talks and is gaining strength daily.  Really, this special was truly moving.

Two things touched me about Gabby’s recovery: one was optimism, and one was music. I’ll talk about music some other day. The notion about optimism was such a needed boost, and I really think we all could use this reminder to one degree or another. From the moment of the accident, Gabby’s husband, Mark Kelly, had a relentlessly positive attitude. He ensued this on others as well. He firmly believed that positive thinking was a powerful form of healing.  I have always heard this, and always subscribed to it… but seeing it in action was breathtaking.  I can’t imagine the times that it seemed everything was against those two and they teamed up to power through with a smile on their face…

A smile on their face…

I know few people have had their physical and emotional selves tried to the degree that Gabby and Mark have, but everything is relative, right?  Right now, my “pink eye” seems like the worst thing on the planet. We all have our own challenges. So, why not apply a little of the Gabby/Mark Optimism to power through? Maybe put a smile on my face as I leave the house with no make up and hideous glasses.  Will the optimism fix my problem? No. But, it could make it just a little easier to deal with.

My mini challenge to you (and me) is to try to put a smile on your face during the hardest times.  Always be realistic about the decisions you face. You don’t need to sugar coat things to be an optimist.  But, make sure to see the good in things. Last, be thankful. Sound kitchy b/c we’re a week from Thanksgiving? It probably is. But, isn’t the point of Thanksgiving: to be grateful? Just because you’re not the one who survived a debilitating gunshot wound to the head, doesn’t mean you don’t have your own obstacles you’ve overcome. Recognize those victories, smile, and be thankful 🙂

2 Comments Add yours

  1. Great post, Nicole. Wise words for us all. It's so easy to see the glass as half full. I have a tendency to be cynical and negative at times…when deep down I know I have so much to be thankful for! Thanks for the reminder 🙂
    I missed the Gabby Giffords interview, but I'm definitely going to watch it now!


  2. This year has definitely taught me that no matter how crappy you think whatever situation you're going through is, there are people with WAY tougher times that are managing to get through it. Love optimism!


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