As usual, let me begin by acknowledging that it’s basically been forever since I’ve written a Three Good Things post, because it has. Not that I haven’t been making lists of things I’ve loved/learned/felt grateful for in the past two months, but because…well, you know. The same reasons why I’ve written approximately 2.5 actual posts since Katie was born seven months ago. (I’m wondering when the statute of limitations runs out for using her as an excuse – a year? Five years? Until the day she leaves for college? In any case, don’t respond and tell me it was at the six-month mark.)
But this week was a really tough one for a couple friends – the kind of tough one that makes you want to spend all the time you can with the people you love the most – and it’s in these kinds of weeks that I think it’s even more important to count our blessings. So, here I am. Probably counting and listing things you saw, and forgot, weeks ago, but hey, if that’s the case, just pretend that I’m reminding you of something you liked so much the first time around that you want to reflect on it again.
Three things I’ve loved:
- The students who gave the money for their senior trip to their principal for her cancer treatment. When people want to get down about kids these days being too selfish, remind them of this. I hope we’re raising two kids who can be this thoughtful.
- Princess Kate took pictures of George and Charlotte herself. I know, she’s really the Duchess of Cambridge, not Princess Kate, and I’m sure the pictures were retouched by someone with photo editing skills, and I know we’re supposed to thumb our noses at the British monarchy, but I like these people. Though I wish she’d also release some of the iPhone outtakes that we know she has, like where Georgie has his finger in Charlotte’s nose.
- Mad Men, seasons 1 and 2. What, you say, Mad Men is over? So what if I’m only eight years behind? And that I know how the show ends? I’d originally planned to watch this over maternity leave, and then I got all tangled up in HGTV and Parks and Rec and, you know, taking care of a baby, and Mad Men got put to the side. I know everyone says that the show gets a little stale as it goes on, but for now, keep it coming. (And good lord, did people seriously smoke and drink like that?) The side plus of this is reading Alan Sepinwall’s old recaps after each episode.
Three things I’ve learned:
- Perspective, as delivered by writers Stephanie Dulli and Mary Beth Williams. Stephanie included this line in a recent post about her four-year-old son: “You teach me every day.” I need to see more of my time with the very energetic Teddy through that lens. And Mary Beth, a melanoma survivor, tweeted, “Sometimes I walk down the street thinking, damn, I get to be alive for this.” I need to remember that, too.
- The science of why you should spend your money on experiences, not things. Hey, I love getting a beautifully wrapped present as much as the next girl. But give me the option of a box or a plane ticket and I’ll take the ticket every time.
- Frankie, the German Shepherd, can sniff out thyroid cancer. I loved Clar to bits, but he could only sniff out pizza and munchkins. Rock on, Frankie.
Three things for which I’ve been grateful:
- I got a post up on an outside site! I tweaked the post I wrote a few months ago about the anxiety I feel every time I go for cancer-related blood work and tests – inspired by the anxiety I was feeling yet again upon a new round of testing – and it ran this week on the site The Mighty. I’ve seen my name on a lot of bylines, but it never gets old. (Oh, and my most recent tests came back stable, still with undetectable thyroglobulin, so I’ll count that as a bonus item.)
- One Bad Mother genius/fail/rant spectacular. I’ve written before about my love for the One Bad Mother podcast. Every week, each of the hosts (and a caller) gives a genius and fail moment in their parenting, and then they play a rant from a mom having a breakdown, which written down sounds like it could exploitative and sad, but it’s actually affirming because WE’VE ALL BEEN THERE. And they get so many of these genius/fail/rant calls that they have enough to do whole shows of them. The takeaway from the Memorial Day spectacular, as with so many of the other genius/fail/rant moments: I’m not alone. Also, pouring a beer into a travel mug and drinking it while grocery shopping alone can be considered a vacation in some circles, and may be a brilliant idea. I usually go shopping on Sunday mornings, so maybe it needs to be a mimosa. Hmm.
- Given what I started this post with, I’m particularly appreciative of Sheryl Sandberg’s willingness to so publicly share her grief after losing her husband last month. I know I’m not the only person who’s learning through Sheryl’s words how to better support loved ones as they grieve. I’m also thankful to her for introducing the idea of “kicking the shit out of Option B,” because all too often, our preferred option A isn’t available. And then what’s left is making the best of Option B, so let’s all kick the shit out of it.