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Just a girl on a journey

On Gratitude.

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On Gratitude.

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I've been thinking for a while, compiling a mental list, of all for which I am thankful this year. Repeatedly, my mind brings me this image of my 8th graders, those sweet little 13 year old girls. This year I am so thankful to know them and to be a witness to their innocence. They are untouched, unmarked by the alcohol, drugs, and sex that tear down so many young girls. They play cutesy games, they delight in Justin Bieber, and they are so dependent on their parents. They are how 8th grade girls should be, and, for that, I am thankful.

I suppose I'm also thankful not be in Mount Dora anymore, to teach in a school where I can pray with my girls, where I can wander off to the chapel when I need some quiet. I'm thankful for the creeper priest, who has actually really grown on me, because he doesn't deviate from the rubrics the way so many do.

I'm grateful for the friendships maintained through the years and over the miles. For Jeanette, who I still talk to almost daily; for Carolyn, who I can always call I'm bored or have a stupid question that requires internet; for Katie, who makes sure to call me every two weeks at a minimum; for Nicole, who always calls from the road; for John-Michael, who keeps me up-to-date on random news and calls me at home to save my cell phone minutes; and, of course, for Duggan, who through all and in all has taught me how to love and be loved.

Even more this year, I am thankful for the St. A's that I knew. For the parish that churned out dedicated, passionate leaders in spite of everything else. I am grateful for the people I met along the way who guided my journey there because they are responsible for making me the person who I am today. And I can't imagine being anyone else.
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