“I cried that I had no shoes until I met the man that had no feet.”

Apparently that was a quote that my father repeated several times to my younger sister. I just heard it today from her and found it gave me a powerful perspective. Sometimes I slip into the woe is me mindset. It could be when I am overwhelmed by the paperwork aspect of teaching, or when I may want something we can’t (or really choose not to) afford at this time (like a new Mac computer or the latest iPhone).This quote helps push the negative thoughts out and replace them with thoughts of gratitude. I am lucky to have a job, and really, it’s a job I love (I just hate the paperwork side of it…and I am lucky to have my Mac from 2009 that is still running.

I look around my beautiful 4 bedroom home (that has heat, air conditioning, boulder fireplace, safe (as one can be these days) neighborhood, …(however, has not been remodeled since we bought the house over 25 years ago) and I am reminded of a story that I just heard yesterday from my new hairdresser. Her father was rich in the country he came from. I think it was Iraq. He gave it all up to come to the United States because of Isis. Now all his family members have to work two jobs just to afford rent on a tiny home. They had to start over again completely.

And my hair dresser said to me, “what would you do? Have riches or safety? He did what he had to do for his children.”

How lucky we are to live in the United States of America.

How lucky we are to feel (relatively) safe every day.

How lucky we are to have food on our table, shelter, a job, our family, and most importantly…our health!

My father’s quote reminds me to keep a positive perspective…and to have gratitude for what I have. I love that he is still teaching me, even though he passed four years ago…










3 thoughts on ““I cried that I had no shoes until I met the man that had no feet.”

  1. Yes, we are so lucky. I’ve heard that quote before. While I don’t write a gratitude list everyday, I make an effort to share with my husband what I a grateful for each day.
    Thank you for this post today.


  2. Recognition for the bounties we enjoy every day is very important! It makes me a little sad that you needed to quantify feeling “safe.” You were right to do so. Whether in our own homes, our schools, or our communities, we should be able to feel safe. However, the world we live in does not always give us this feeling any longer. I believe, though, that the good outweighs the bad; the positive is stronger than the negative, which relates to your point of feeling gratitude for all that we have. Thanks for sharing!


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