For my story of Gratitude, I will need to go back in time to briefly tell you about myself.  As an older college student, I am married. However, my wife is not my first wife and I am not my wife’s first husband.  We were both previously married.  We also, both lost our first spouses to disease.   After I lost my first wife, I was not in a good place, both physically and emotionally.  But, I kept on.

Approximately 6 years after my first wife passed away, I met my current wife Tiffany.  She ultimately changed my life for the better.  After many discussions about my unhappiness at my job, I quit my job to go back to school to find a job I will be happy with.

Physically, I have lost 40 pounds and have never been happier or healthier.

Which brings me to my gratitude part.  Approx. 1 year ago, I was diagnosed with seizures.  I had 2 seizures at home and 1 seizure here at Bellevue College.  This diagnosis changed my life.

This wasn’t life changing like a cancer diagnosis, but this was still a life changing event for me.  After this diagnosis, I began to really put things into perspective.  I began to appreciate the little things more.  I began to appreciate waking up every morning and found that each day is a blessing.  I was grateful to be alive.

Tiffany and I find the time to travel now and then when I am out of school.  I am grateful for the time I spend with her and am grateful for being able to see many parts of the world that I hadn’t been able to before. Our most recent trip was to Norway, to visit a small island called Svalbard northwest of Norway.  We wanted to see the Polar bears, (quite frankly before we can’t due to climate change).  I was grateful for the experience of seeing Polar bears in their natural habitat.  I am also hopeful that this won’t be the last time we are able to see Polar bears on the “Fast Ice” where they live and hunt. I am hopeful that climate change can be slowed down so the ice doesn’t all melt, leaving polar bears to hunt on land, where they are at a disadvantage.

Everyday I am grateful. Grateful to have Tiffany in my life. Grateful to be able to take a walk with her and our dog.  Grateful to be able to travel and see many beautiful places around the country and around the world.  I am Grateful to be alive!



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