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30 Reasons To Be Happy

In no particular order...

1. Mico turned 1 last week.

2. Mico can almost say mama.

3. Mico's sense of wonder. Whenever he encounters something new, his eyes get really big and his eyebrows swirl upwards.

4. I love what I do for a living. It teases my brain in all the right ways, and I learn something new every day while helping people make smarter decisions with their data.

5. I love my standing desk that overlooks Monument Circle. I know this is small, perhaps even silly, but as a city girl, it makes me feel at home at work.

6. I want to show Mico the world slowly so, I booked us tickets to Montreal for a few days in May. I'm nervous to fly alone with a 15-month-old, but I'm excited to show him a new country.

7. We're going "home" in October. I don't get to see my family much so, I'm really forward to this trip especially since we're going to take Mico too.

8. My body feels a little bit more like myself again. I know it's been a year but recovery from child birth is so much more complex than people think, and I still wish the world would stop undermining it especially other women.

9. Some of my health issues have explanations after years of going to different doctors. While I don't have relief from the issues, I do have some ways to make the pain bearable.

10. R has a job that he enjoys, and finds challenging too.

11. My brother and sister-in-law have three super cute kids.

12. One of my good friends in Indy is expecting her second kid, and I'm so excited to hold him in a few months.

13. Mico eats food like a champ including eggs, which is something I haven't been able to do my entire life.

14. I'm officially a US citizen, which means I'll be able to vote for the first time in my life this year.

15. I have a house that is big enough for all four of us (I counted the cat), and small enough that I feel cozy.

16. The Willie's Special salad at Big Lug. Can someone give me a recipe for Nashville Hot Chicken wings?

17. I'm able to save money every month for the future - including little Mico's college fund. Some nights, I have dreams that we'll be less focused on productivity as a measure of success by the time he grows up so, he'll be able to be a happy farmer and surviving artist.

18. I'm going to speak at a local event in a few months. I'm glad to have opportunities where I can talk about my background to encourage other people who are in the minority to break a few barriers.

19. Friends and family, who have always supported my rather unconventional views at times, and challenged them when I wasn't right.

20. R started leaving me little notes in my car before a big event like an interview or my first day back to work after maternity leave. They gave me a confidence boost when I needed them, and I still keep them in my car.

21. The card my parents sent me when I graduated college in 2012. They sent it to one of my professor's who handed it to me as soon as I walked off stage with my diploma.

22. Friends from different backgrounds who introduced me to a world of foods, and perspectives.

23. Education. I love learning, and hate school. However, I made a lot of wonderful connections in both undergrad and grad school. I honestly wouldn't be where I am today without the support of many professors who always saw something in me, even when I didn't take classes too seriously.

24. Books. The cheapest way to travel and broaden your mind.

25. Mico's hugs. He wraps his small arms around you and rests his head on your shoulder.

26. Recognizing that life isn't all about work or "achieving results". It's valuable just being.

27. R taking initiative to find a sitter so we can go out without Mico for the occasional date night.

28. I went for a run with Mico.

29. I turned 30-years-old today.

30. As old and independent as I am, I still miss my mum's chai and cooking every day.

If you've been a part of my life in any form, for a fleeting second or for a decade, thank you!

Here's a random picture from almost ten years ago, taken somewhere in Michigan.

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