I was recently driving home from work one day when my iPod, set to shuffle, starting playing Natalie Grant’s “Another Day.” As soon as I heard the intro to the song, I turned it up and started singing along (albeit not very well) to the lyrics. The chours going something like this…”I thank God for another day. Another chance to love the ones I love. To find my way. To laugh. To Dance. And watch the sun come up. Another day I get to live as if every breath could be the last I take. I get another day.” The last couple of weeks have been a little disjointed as I returned home from Eating Disorders National Lobby Day in Washington, DC and a wonderful and humbling time spent with friends to some personal things that were hard for me and my family to deal with. Not only that but after hearing a heartbreaking story at Lobby Day of a mother who tragically lost her young daughter to an eating disorder, I began reflecting on how blessed we should be to just wake up in the morning. My dad reminds me, as Benjamin Franklin did so many years ago, that there are two certainties in life, death and taxes. We are all going to die at some point, it’s inevitable, so why would we live our lives consumed with what we look like on the outside or what material goods we can collect in our lifetime. While in DC, my very amazing friend and mentor gave me one of her equally amazing pieces of artwork in a frame (I am lucky enough to say this is the second piece of artwork she has gifted me) with her motto, words that we all should live by “It’s a given that you are beautiful because you are alive.” Whenever I am having those days when I feel self conscious or that crazy eating disorder voice tries to sneak its way back into my head, I remind myself of this. I recently attended a gala with another great friend and inspiration to me, on the way to the gala we discussed how we as women tend to talk about weight whenever we are around each other. We compliment each other on it, we tell each other how are diets are going, if we “cheated” that day and ate…heaven forbid…a dessert! Do we have nothing more important to discuss? Are we not dumbing ourselves down as females when our conversations revolve around the new diet trend and what size jeans we are wearing? Can we not just be thankful to be alive and celebrate the beautiful human beings we are? I can promise you that those who have lost a loved one do not remember them for how great they looked in a bikini or for how flat their stomach was. Instead they remember the person, the heart, the personality. So, even though there are days that I wish I didn’t have the stretch marks or the birthmark on my chin, the days I wish I didn’t throw away my skinny jeans, those are not the days that I will remember when I look back at the life I lived. I will remember the days I spent at the park with my daughter or at the lake with my family, the Saturdays I laughed with my grandmother and cried with my mother. Be thankful for the life you have been given because you have been given it for a reason (even if you are still searching for that reason or waiting for it to be revealed to you). Tomorrow morning when I get out of bed in the morning, I will look at my nightstand where there is a picture of me holding my daughter, a picture of me with my late grandmother, and a magnificent piece of artwork that reminds me as I wipe the sleep away from my eyes that it is a given I am beautiful because I am alive. And I thank God for another day.