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Today I heard about a tragic incident involving the brother and infant niece of my sister’s friend.

The friend’s brother and infant daughter perished in a car accident. The brother and his daughter were passengers, while the driver and the driver’s girlfriend survived.

Even though I don’t personally know the  people involved in this tragedy, nonetheless I choked up when I saw pictures that the deceased brother’s sister put up on on Facebook. Her caption was “celebrating the life of (her brother and niece’s name)’.

This week has been a stressful one for me. The twins have been a little more demanding and needy, more than they usually are. (The week’s arctic temps have made it impossible to do anything outdoors with them and they are probably experiencing a bit of cabin fever). Meanwhile older son, is prepping to take part in his first ever taekwondo tournament tomorrow, which meant more days practicing at his taekwondo club and lots of anxiety for us both. It didn’t help that older son’s eczema on his leg (the same leg that he will use to break wooden boards at the tournament) was getting so bad we had to take him to an urgent care facility to have it checked out and the doctor prescribing antibiotics! The result of all this was a week of a short-tempered mom, annoyed and irritated at everything and everyone.

But news of the tragedy that fell on my sister’s friend made me pause. I immediately hugged my twins, quietly saying a little prayer of thanks and apology for being anxious about the minutiae of everyday living.

Sometimes it takes a tragedy to remind us to take pause, make a mental list of all our blessings and say thank you for each day we have. Because we never really know how much time we have, we need to make each day count. And in between, we should pause and take a moment to process our feelings and say thanks.

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