fifty reasons to live

one. because they said you couldn’t. 

two. because they said you wouldn’t.
three. because they said you shouldn’t.
four. because you wake up in the morning. there must be a reason for that, even if it’s something so small as to smile at a stranger. because maybe that small smile is the lone bright spot in someone’s incredibly dark day. and your smile… it’s amazing. remember?
five. cupcakes.
six. because you have friends. you do.
seven. there’s music. everywhere. and it’s beautiful.
eight. and flowers. the bluebonnets. the roses. and ranunculus. daisies in the sun. magnolias in the trees.
nine. daddy.
ten. mama.

eleven. films. the ones that make you laugh. the ones that make you cry. the ones that make you want to tell a story. the ones that manage to do all three things at once. like steel magnolias. you would’ve missed that, had you given in all those years ago. you would’ve missed its perfection.
twelve. aggie football.
thirteen. poetry.
fourteen. at the end of the day, you get to crawl into your supremely comfortable bed dressed in its star wars sheets and sleep knowing that you made it one more day. that you hung in there. that even if you hadn’t accomplished anything else in your day, you did that. and that was enough.
fifteen. pappadeaux’s.
sixteen. literature. think of all the characters you’ve yet to meet.
seventeen. it’s glorious outside. one last lovely glimpse of the spring…
eighteen. minn. she would want you to. can’t you hear her in your head? jenny griffin…
nineteen. shazam.
twenty. bambam. those two… they need you.

twenty-one. you quit smoking. there’s a reason for that.
two. your teachers… your professors… they saw good in you when you couldn’t see it in yourself. they saw you.
three. disneyland. or world. either one will do. well, no. world. universal studios. harry potter. a person needs to see that place.
four. utah.
five. colorado.
six. england. london, specifically, but… really, the whole country’s kind of magnificent.
seven. germany.
eight. ireland. you’ve not been there. and you know… there’s that branch of the tree. on your father’s mother’s side.
nine. austria. you’ve not been there, either. and you know… there’s that branch of the tree. on your mother’s mother’s side.
thirty. greece. you’ve not been there, either. and EVERYONE needs to see that.

thirty-one. coca-cola. yeah. i said it. a soft drink. a damned fine soft drink.
two. speaking of teachers… there’s those ones who never taught you, but they know you (mostly because of your father, sure, but also because when you see them, it shows in your face how much you love them)… they ask about you. you. not your brothers, but you. even though you never had the privilege of learning from them. they ask about you because they love you.
three. you haven’t gotten whitten her chocolate-covered coffee beans yet. or kaitlyn’s yankee candle. or brenda’s gift card… or whomever else out there in need of some kindness and generosity. you haven’t shown everyone the love. and they could use some.
four. phineas still has about fifty thousand miles him. oh, the places you could go…
five. shakira hasn’t won the voice yet. not that she’s gonna win it this year… but it could happen… someday.
six. chicken spaghetti.
seven. calvin and hobbes.
eight. blueberry muffins.
nine. settlers of catan.
forty. scrabble.

forty-one. bookstores.
two. movie theaters.
three. house of blues.
four. macaroni and cheese.
five. halibut. with the piccata sauce–the crab meat and the lemons and the capers.
six. laughter.
seven. you’ve stories to tell. you do.
eight. because if you die, then they win. don’t let that happen.
nine. because your brother can’t.
fifty. because you promised someone you would. you promised.

these are my reasons. but you out there… if you’re struggling, feel free to borrow them.

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