Gratitude notes for July 2019

Today, two of my co-workers were able to identify that I’d made an irrational decision based on a frustration I was experiencing from a given task. They told me forthright, and I’m really thankful they pointed that out. Without them, I couldn’t have recognized my error and made it right. I’m very lucky I have people who can help me course-correct when I need it.

I’m very thankful for sleep.

I had a ton of really enjoyable conversations today. It was just one of those days where I take for granted how many people I get to have meaningful conversations with and am thankful for each of them.

Board game night was so fun! I lost both games, but it was the journey there that mattered!

I really enjoyed my jog this morning. We’ve got a little friendly competition going, which motivates me more than I would’ve thought.

I’m also thankful for all the little interactions I got to have with people today, from shimmying with a co-worker in the morning to laughing with people I joke with or who make fun of my face when I’m enjoying music by myself at my desk.

I’m very lucky that I got to enjoy all these moments throughout the day. My loved ones are all safe and my life is very peaceful. I’m extremely fortunate that I live in a time and place that allows me all these privileges.

I loved playing piano today. I whizzed through an online tutorial about learning the basics (again, since I had lessons nearly 20 years ago), and then practiced the opening chords for “Kakarito Village” by Koji Kondo. After doing the chords enough, I could speed up and make it feel natural. I have a long way to go, but even getting a bit of that satisfaction on day one has been super rewarding.

I appropriately had pancakes for breakfast and turned them into a very fun run at the beach today. It’s fun when I get to have “little moments” with pedestrians when I’m really feeling a song in my headphones; it’s fun to connect with strangers in that little way.

I saw a lady dragging a table through a gate and offered to help her. She was so sweet and seemed super appreciative for the hand. I didn’t want anything in return, but it did feel nice that she was so happy from the gesture. I should keep helping ladies dragging tables in the future.

I love how clean my place is. It’s so clean that I won’t even leave dishes in the sink anymore.

I’m so lucky that a day like this is even possible for me. I have the freedom to chose my schedule, the health to be at the beach and groove to some tunes, and I worked through an eclectic variety of foods throughout the day. I’m thankful that my loved ones are all safe and that I had the luxury to throw myself a little vacation right here at home. I could lose that privilege at any time.

I cleaned my apartment so good today. It started with one delivery box that was clogging up my entry way, and it ended with completely rearranging my closet space and sweeping up dust in the process. Surprisingly solid sense of accomplishment from it, and my place feels strangely better than it did before.

I’m so lucky I get to hang out and eat with some friends that I’ve had for a relatively long time. I really enjoy them, and I’m grateful that they choose to spend their time with me, too.

It’s fun going to the grocery store and looking forward to chatting with the person who helps me check out. I always talk with this one lady there who I just feel like I can relate to and talk to easily. Getting groceries isn’t the same without her.

I’m very lucky that I’m healthy and didn’t have to actively think about my mortality today. My health could go at any moment, and I’m very fortunate that it’s such a non-issue for me that I could concentrate on things that make me happy instead. I’m very lucky for this opportunity.

On my drive home tonight at 11:30pm, I saw a group of ~100 people on bikes with glowing lights just rolling down the middle of the street. One guy was riding the chariot of bicycles with two American flags flying behind him. I guess people do all kinds of things on Friday nights.

Great dance class tonight. I’m lucky I can afford to block off that time and let loose for a little bit. What a great routine I get to have.

Fantastic improv comedy show tonight! I loved the “abandoned meadow” and dance battle scenes. There were tons of funny moments and a full crowd, including 10 of our own who got together for a bit after. I’m so thankful that enjoying an evening like this is possible. We were able to do it so casually today. We have the freedom to do as we please and I feel very fortunate for that.

I’m very lucky for the number of people I get to chat and connect with in any given day. It reminds me of a time when I’d bump into people in town that I grew up with, except I get to enjoy that serendipity in my life now on a regular basis.

It felt really sweet to be welcomed back to the office after being gone for a while. I didn’t realize how impactful small gestures like that can be; I’d best remember that so I can pay it forward to people I miss when they’re gone.

I listened to an IndieHacker podcast with Hiten Shah today. It stirred a lot of helpful ideas about how to affect my process to optimize for continuous problem-solving and improvement that I’ll be slowly implementing into my routine. I’m thankful I stumbled upon it.

I’m thankful for the food I eat, today. It might not seem significant, but I eat exactly what I want to eat, and I’m grateful that I want to eat stuff that happens to be good for me and keeps my energy in a healthy state. I know what it’s like to be trapped in a diet of fats and sugars, and I’m very lucky that I can see my way out of it.

I sat next to a pretty successful entrepreneur on the flight back to LA today. I picked his brain for a full half of the trip, and he was happy to oblige. I love it when I get to have enjoyable (and valuable) conversations while traveling.

For the first time since I moved to my current place, I let it be 76 degrees in my home and enjoyed it. No A/C or even moving air. It felt like summer. I ought to do that more often.

I’m lucky for the opportunities I have to relax and think of absolutely nothing. I’m not brain-dead; I get to enjoy the lack of obligations and lack of dangers. It’s a great place to be, and that privilege can be ruined in an instant by something irreversable. I’m very thankful to live in a time and place that affords me these moments for free.

Great time at dance this morning. I don’t know if it’s the playlist or the sound system or the people, but it was super easy to lose myself in the music today. Love that I get to come home to such an awesome group.

I’m very lucky for people I’ve spent a large chunk of my life with who I still get to keep in touch with. I think I undervalue how important those relationships are, and I’m glad I still have some that I get to connect with.

The “ronny/lily” episode of Barry was awesome. I like that program, but I really like that episode.

Playing with a dog in a pool on a hot summer’s day was a real treat today. Especially when she waits for me to come up for air so she can jump on my head and get the tennis ball from my hand. I’m not joking; I laugh every time she does it.

I’m very lucky for the people in my life who like spending time with me enough to spend multiple days with me. It might seem normal at first, but there are people who don’t get to enjoy that same luxury. I’m very very lucky that way.

I’m thankful for all the tiny comforts that ward off distractions and make it easy for me to be in the moment. A/C. Full meals. Water to drink. A safe place to sleep. All these things are the foundation for a life that I’m thankful for.

Mom and I started and finished Stranger Things season 3 today. Perfect show for a rainy day.

I woke up after 10 hours of sleep and played with my Mom’s dog in the pool with heavy rain and 80 degree heat, all on a whim. The smells of summer have been a trip to the past; they remind me of times when I was a kid and how summer truly was freedom. I’m really thankful that I get to experience this environment in such a present and emotional way. I’m thankful that I opt for this kind of vacation.

I’m so lucky that I got to be with my Zumba ladies tonight! The crew is as together as ever, and it felt great to be right back in it as if I’d never left. It’s a real treat that I get to be part of that community and got to have so much fun with everyone tonight.

I’m very lucky that staying with my Mom and her boyfriend is something I enjoy and look forward to. It’s very easy for me, and there are countless realities where that wouldn’t be true. I’m so thankful that we all get along and are able to enjoy our time when we’re together.

I was only in the gym for 20 minutes this morning, but I still got to bump into one of my neighbors that I love seeing and talking to. He’s such a good guy, and I’m lucky that I get to cross paths with him from time to time.

Today, I learned a lot from somebody who was raised American but also identifies as Mexican. He had a hard time not fitting in growing up because of the color of his skin, and it was enlightening to hear about the world view that results from it. It’s just a whole set of problems I’ve never had to seriously deal with. I’m glad for the chance to add that bit to my perspective going forward, and I’m thankful he was able to tell his story in a way that resulted in something meaningful for me.

At the airport gates, there’s an unspoken rule that, if you can, you should find seats in a way that always leaves at least one empty seat between people. At the time I arrived, that wasn’t an option, so I chose to sit next to a girl who looked to be about my age. We started talking, and the next hour of our wait went by effortlessly.

I’m so lucky to have my Mom, who makes time in her schedule to see me and who is a fantastic host in so very many ways. Being with her today just makes my life better, and I’m very thankful and lucky to have her.

I was flying down the sidewalk this morning with some tunes I hadn’t listened to in about six months. It feels great release energy so excitedly. It feels exhilarating like a video game, except that it’s actually real life.

I was delighted with some awesome people I got to spend one-on-one time with during lunch and dinner today. I love how natural it is to schedule time with people so casually and genuinely enjoy the company and conversations. I’m really grateful that I have people in my life that make time together so rewarding and fulfilling.

I had a surprisingly fun time solving one problem at work today. It was a simple problem with some unique constraints. I was able to scrap together some tools I’d used in different contexts previously, and it “just worked”. And then it really helped the people who had the problem, which felt really good. I’m grateful that I can stumble across little gems like this throughout my day.

There are tens of little interactions I get to have throughout my day that I totally take for granted on a regular basis. I’m very lucky to be with people who just mesh together so willingly and easily. I’m fortunate to be part of all that and to be with such awesome people each day.

I’m thankful that my body works in a way that spares me from ongoing pain and fatigue. I think I really get the best of life because I don’t have to live with distractions related to survival. I’m very lucky all this was given to me.

I got to have one of my morning dance sessions in the middle of my jog this morning. I dropped into the office super early and had an interpretive dance sesion with one of my early-bird co-workers. I love that the routine might be firing up again.

I received a fat property tax bill in the mail today from a state I haven’t lived in for nearly 18 months. The bill was based on incorrect information, and I immediately thought “ugh, this is going to be a pain to correct”. I called in, and the nicest lady answered. I think her helpful demeanor was the difference between me feeling violated and me feeling confident that this error can be sorted out. I’m thankful for her. I don’t know if she knows it, but she made me feel so much better with so little effort.

I really lucky for the people I get to see throughout my day, having lunch, wishing them a happy evening, showing each other areas where we grew up or frequent annually. I could be head-down working somewhere with people I have nothing in common with. It’s really neat that we can just enjoy being together. I’m thankful for those people being in my life.

I’m very lucky that I’m not haunted by memories I cannot cope with, and that I’m healthy and able to maintain a sense of security in my day-to-day life. It’s hard for me to remember the last time I was shaken and vulnerable, which is such a testament to how good my life is now. I’m so fortunate that today continued that streak. It could end any day.

There were a bunch of people waiting for the bathrooms at Venice Beach pier today. I walked up and asked some bystanders if they were waiting. A nice woman replied “yes”; I nodded and wandered behind her. Then she pointed with her finger, “that stall is actually open, but there’s poop all over the seat”. Immediately, I responded with “yeah, that’s fine”, and I went right in. I think I surprised both of us with how nonchalant I was about not caring about the poop.

Nobody made any moves to go into that stall after me.

I’m very fortunate that I got to casually go to the beach and enjoy the people and weather today. It’s so great how people can all coexist in the same area with hundreds of other people around and they all get along. I’m very lucky I live at a time and place where something like that so available and safe to do.

I got to meet my friends’ new puppy tonight! She was exhausted when I arrived, but she took a doggy nap during our human dinner and she really showed her spunk! I’m thankful for the friends I have and the time we spend together.

I’m very lucky I have the dance class routine I have and the instructor who leads it. I really appreciate having it, and it’s fun doing it with other people who like to have a good time shakin’ it.

I got to have lunch and walks with people throughout the day. I won’t always have the opportunity to spend days like this where I get to hang out and enjoy my time with people who I feel lucky to know and to see each day. I’m very lucky to have the health and safety required for days like this.

I got sprayed with a money gun today. Such a great way to walk into a happy hour full of people you know. It’s even better when they’re cheering for you to dance while the money’s coming down on you.

I was booked today, and I really enjoyed it. I really value the one-on-ones I got to have with people; I’m very lucky that I have people who value me enough to want to spend time together like that.

I had one-on-one time with so many people throughout the day and enjoyed them each so much. Breakfast. Lunch. Paused-in-passing to connect. Work-oriented sit-downs. A high-five at the end of the day.

My right heel keeps threatening tenonitis, but it somehow holds up. Bike ride to and from work today was a breeze. I’m able to keep energy throughout my day. These are all things that were given to me and I’m very lucky to have. It won’t always be so simple, and I’m thankful it was today.

I’m grateful I have a home I get to come to at the end of the day that’s mine and that I feel safe in. I’m so fortunate to live in a place and age where these luxuries are the norm. I’m so thankful that I’ve gotten to enjoy these gifts for as long as I have.

I love that I can call my parents whenever. I mean, I respect their bedtimes and stuff, but I really am lucky that I can talk to them throughout the week and that I genuinely enjoy talking to them. I’m so fortunate that I have them.

Something I take for granted a little bit is how alive my city is. When I walk outside, there’s always people around. Tonight, some kids were skateboarding in the street with a makeshift wooden ramp they put out in the middle of the road. There was a group of people chatting and laughing outside a church on my way to my car. People jogging in their neighborhoods. It’s easy to miss these things, but they’re little gifts, each one of them. How lucky to live so peacefully.

I’m very lucky that my body works as well as it does and that I can eat and dance and have energy throughout my day. I’m aware of how quickly that can all go out the door and how it one day will.

Sometimes I go a whole day without leaving my room. Today was one of those days, and I loved it. Long Johns. Sleeveless-T. Chicken wraps with red peppers straight off the grill. Spoiling myself suits me.

I’m thankful for my co-workers. We really do have a group that gets together to solve problems and ultimately help each other. It could be so much more complicated than that and it just isn’t.

I put on some Missy Higgins concerts last night and really enjoyed myself. Missy just looks like she’s doing what she’s meant to do, and it inspired me. I’m really glad I stumbled on that and was able to be affected that way.

I’m so lucky that I have the luxury to be at home comfortably today. Things won’t be so easy one day not so far in the future, and I’m incredibly fortunate that I get to enjoy my safety and health like I do today.

A few of us went to the beach today, and we saw this guy doing hip exercises in the sand. It really just looked like he was humping the earth. It was all hushed giggles at our camp.

I found a song that just triggers the waterworks with me. It’s called “Killing Me” by Luke Sital-Singh. It yanks me out of my usual flows and puts me squarely in the present moment. I love that I have tools that help me sculpt my perspective.

I sometimes forget how lucky I am for my safety and health. I never have to think about my body in a distracting way; for the most part, it “just works”. I noticed today that I also don’t have the best body compared to other people out there who might be stronger or faster than me. But that doesn’t matter to me now. My body does everything I want it to do, which is something I’m extremely lucky to have and could lose at any moment, likely before I’m ready to.

I’m also lucky I have people I can pick up the phone and talk to whenever. There was a time I didn’t feel that way, but today I do, and I’m very thankful to have any connections that make me feel supported that way.