Aside from some all too brief hours of sunshine in the afternoon on Friday, it has been either rainy or dismally cloudy here in Chicago for seven days. Was it only last Sunday that it was bright and warm and saw the lawn covered with sparrows, squirrels and rabbits? It seems but a dream now. It feels like it has been dreary and grey forever. My thoughts and mood are dismal to match. But the sun is still in the sky. And one day this week it will reappear (the weather forecasters have promised!). So will I while away the day thinking of the many trials of my life or will I try to count my blessings? Will I embrace hope and think upon the many beauties of this world or will I gaze stubbornly into the darkness? Can I choose? I think I can. I choose to think upon my blessings. Its still overcast outside but I feel my spirit begin to lighten. I recognize that for many years now I have given up on hope. The illness and death of a loved one will do that to you. To hope again is a frightening prospect. It may only lead to bone-crushing disappointment. But, how else is one to live? I have been too long under a blanket of dejection and it has not served me well. I read a poem today and it made me remember how full of hopes and dreams I was when I was so much younger. Some dreams didn’t come true and nearly broke my heart. But, some did come true and caused my heart to soar. Can I learn to live in a better way? It seems to me that I used to be wiser. I was certainly happier. It feels a bold move to make but I think I will choose to hope again. After all, some dreams did come true. Perhaps more will too.