I am thankful for:
- my husband. He's my best friend and my lover, the one who puts up with my dizzying workload and mood swings, tucks me into bed at night, and cooks me breakfast on Sunday mornings. I can't imagine my life without him.
- my family. They make me who I am. My mom, my brother, and I are closer than most families, and I wouldn't have it any other way. I am forging an adult relationship with my father, and I can now say that I wouldn't want life without him in it. And my extended family, crazy as they are,knows the same stories, has the same quirks, and laughs at the same jokes.
- my education. I have learned so much in school. Not just about my -ology, but about history, politics, music,writing, literature, economics... My pre-college education gave me the fire to learn more and go to a place that would challenge me. My undergraduate years sure challenged me, but they also made me a person that can understand the stories behind the news, they exposed me to new cultures, and they introduced me to wonderful new people. My master's degree forced me to figure out what I wanted to be when I grew up and gave me the real-world experience that my undergrad ivy-clad halls shielded me from. And my Ph.D. years, well they've been the best in my life, personally and professionally.
- my dog. Unconditional love, someone who's ecstatic to see me every day, a reason to get up in the morning, a space heater for a cold bed, the force that makes me get outside and get moving...
- my mom. I know I already listed my family, but my mom deserves special mention for being a role model of a strong woman and a strong scientist. I think because I grew up with her example, my way has been much easier than it would have otherwise been.
- my friends. Here and far, in-person or virtual. Thanks for your support and encouragement, your funny and sad stories and for letting me have a glimpse into your lives.
- the opportunities I've had because I was born in the affluent, modern world. Imagine life if you were born in Ethiopia, Bangladesh, or Iran. Or the United States in 1800. I am thankful for living in age and a society where I have almost unlimited opportunities. Sure, the way may still present some obstacles, but they are nothing compared to what might have been.