I have been thinking literally for months – and honestly for years – about Gratitude. And I have been struggling for over a month about how to write this particular blog. I felt like I needed to say something huge and go into a ton of detail and explanation. But I’ve decided simplicity is best.

Three years ago I wrote my first blog about gratitude. I had just left the hospital after suffering from an epidural abscess – an infection on my spine that almost paralyzed me from the chest down and easily could have killed me. That first blog about Gratitude is here. When I read it now I feel like I was rambling – just so thankful to be alive, but still so scared as well. It was such a huge experience and at a time in my life when I felt incredibly vulnerable.

A few months later I wrote Gratitude, Part 2. I was a little bit calmer and a lot more scared – by hospital and doctor bills and survivor’s guilt and being able to take care of my children and support them – and I realized that my gratitude was definitely a choice. I had gone through a little bit of depression, as did my kids, but the choice to be grateful helped pull me through the hard times.

Fast forward to today… the Season of Gratitude 2017. Three and a half years into this business and sometimes I am simply overwhelmed at how much we have to be grateful for. This past summer our members all chipped in and sponsored John Mariotti to send him (and me!) to The CrossFit Games in Madison, Wisconsin. This is a dream John has been working toward for years! Having everyone show their support in such a beautiful way was an incredible gift from our friends, families and members.

Not long after that everyone from the gym surprised me for my birthday with a surprise party and an incredible bicycle! You sneaky folks were clever enough to find the guy who designs my box software, email everyone in the gym and work together to get me a gift I never would get for myself. I knew you guys were up to something, but I had no idea you would do something so incredibly generous – of your time, your energy and of your funds. If I knew who specifically to thank I would – but it was a group gift, so thank you to everyone! Super-shoutouts go to Kerry Adams, Sharon Hughes, Richard Hill and Karen Sanderson and anyone else I missed (or don’t know about) for putting it all together. You guys are amazing!!!

People often ask me what is the one thing that makes our box better than anyone else’s. The answer is incredibly easy – it’s our members. We literally have THE BEST CrossFitters on Earth at this box. They may not be a bunch of Games athletes, but they are kind, generous and supportive of each other and they work hard every day to get better.

Y’all, I would not get up at 4:30am everyday if I didn’t LOVE what I do. I love seeing you get stronger, faster, healthier. I love seeing your confidence grow. I love watching friendships develop and families grow. I love this place and I love ALL of you!

So THANK YOU, from the bottom of my heart, for showing up, staying positive, working hard, helping others, and mostly for trusting me with your health and fitness. I am truly Grateful!