Accept challenges, so that you may feel the exhilaration of victory.

~George S. Patton~ 

It is 100 days until the 4th of July.  Some people would think that would be a statement of dread on my part.  After all, it is the anniversary of Stephen’s passing.  And, I will be honest.  It will be a tough day.  Without a doubt, I will shed a few tears in remembrance, and will think back to that moment;  the day everything changed forever.

On the first anniversary, I was determined to run away from the 4th of July.  I wanted nothing to do with a fireworks display, a hot dog, a smiling baby, or crowds of people celebrating. But, it seemed that life and Stephen had other plans.  On that day, we were, in the weirdest of circumstances, led to a place in the road to have front row seats to the best 4th of July parade one could ever imagine.  It was at that moment I realized I was not meant to run away from nor deny the day.  I was just supposed to live it.

So, that next year, I decided that we would do something deliberately positive to mark the day.  Rather than let the day rule me, or envelope me with the sadness of grief, we would put something beautiful out into the world.  So, we launched our little Facebook community that could, Just One Little Thing.  Initially, I was the only member, and a little short of breath as I hoped others would want to, like me, find daily gratitude together. Today, we are over 9000 strong.  We have members from 20 different countries, who speak 18 different languages.  Each and every day, each one of those JOLT’ers plays a part in me finding a grateful life…..they inspire me.

So, I was thinking about what we could do on the 4th this year.  And I’ve decided to devote it to my health. So, about a week ago my husband and I started a countdown to the 4th, set some personal milestones that included inches lost,pounds shed, nutrition and exercise goals, and we set off to create another positive moment on the 4th.  I can already picture the day, having kept my personal promise and feeling good, toasting Stephen as the sun sets and telling him that I continue to live a happy and healthy life in his honor.

I’m blogging about it for two reasons.  One, this is keeping me honest.  And second, I want to invite you to take part.  For me, it is my health I want to focus on for the next 100 days and beyond.  For you, it may be something different.  Perhaps you want to focus on your relationships, or maybe have a personal goal you want to finally check off your list.  Maybe it is as simple as making a promise to find three things each day to be thankful for….for 100 days straight.

Whatever it is, I invite you to join, to stretch beyond your limits and see what you can achieve.

With gratitude,