Giving and Taking

I’ve had a lovely birthday, full of friends, good wishes, family, and even fabulous weather (yesterday, unlike today, was gorgeous). All of those things have made February 18, 2010, a great day…and much better than last year, which was a very low point for me.

But with the good things came the bad. The plane crash into the Echelon Building–I saw the thick, black smoke curling into the sky as I drove towards home after a lovely run with a friend at Lady Bird Lake. There’s no mistaking that kind of smoke, and I was horrified that it was so close to my parent’s home and my daughter’s work. I feel for the pilot’s family; no one on earth deserves the kind of hell that man has thrust upon them. And my heart goes out to those innocent people who were injured and killed.

I also found out that a friend of mine who had recently been diagnosed with ovarian cancer died yesterday. It was a punch in the gut. It’s hard to reconcile how, in such a short time, a vibrant, wonderful woman living life to its fullest can be struck with illess and succumb. Shocking.

But those sad things are perhaps necessary to make us appreciate all the more the beautiful things in our own lives. I am so thankful to have my life and the love of my friends and family; it’s the best birthday gift ever.

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Published by Leah Nyfeler

I'm a writer, editor, runner, and adventurer who is always looking for the next new story, exciting adventure, and good meal/book/movie. My focus is on helping people find their best, healthiest self through sharing what I know and how I've come to learn it. In addition to my blog "Enjoying the Journey: Observations on the Fit Life" at, my articles have appeared in a variety of print and online magazines. You can hear me as part of the 2015 Austin cast of Listen To Your Mother.

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