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Thank You.

December 18, 2012

When I was a senior in high school, my French IV class was sometimes less learning a language and more interpreting strange dreams, venting about our school and the people in it, and I guess at times a little bit about Le Petit Prince. Our class was tiny, and we all grew to be pretty close - even with our teacher who was really so relatable and understanding and crazy.

One day our Petit Prince discussion led us to a class-wide confession of sorts. We seriously all went around and admitted our biggest flaw, I guess you could say - the thing we most disliked about ourselves. It was strange and interesting and humbling and really honest.

I remember I said my biggest flaw - the thing I most dislike about myself - is that I'm self-centered.

It's been pointed out to me by others in the past, and obviously it is something I have come to recognize myself. I've worked on it, but not as much as I wish.

It was brought up again recently by someone I care about a lot. I don't want to be this way. When I see these problems in myself why don't I do more to fix them? I guess I'm not only self-centered, but lazy and afraid sometimes, too. This person and I talked about how I tend to get caught up in myself. I don't take the time I should to thank and visibly appreciate others.

This post is not being written to put myself down. I want to talk about what I've learned from all this so far. I've learned how important and satisfying and easy it is to say, "thank you." to say it and show it and mean it. To think about someone else, their service to you, and their need to feel appreciated.

My roommate had a pretty terrible weekend not too long ago. She's been staying at her parents' house ever since, in an effort to recover in a more.. comfortable home than ours. Last Monday she was feeling down about missing our ward Christmas party and not having a chance to say goodbye to us before we all move out. I felt for her so badly. I told her our other two roommates and I wanted to come visit her that night, and her reply touched me more than I would guess she intended.

"You would drive all the way here? I would love that but if the drive is too far don't worry about it."
Puhleeease. I told her we were coming.
"Awesome. This means so much to me. Thank you!"
The sweetest. It was so good to sit and talk with her, to hear her story and see that she was okay, to forget about my own finals or trials or problems for one night.

Meg drove us out to the house, and I made sure to thank her for doing that. It meant a lot to me, too.

The other day at work my manager gave me a free sandwich. I thanked him when he gave it to me, but I wanted to thank him again before I left. He seemed busy talking with someone, so I almost walked out without saying anything. But then I didn't let myself, and it felt a million times better to let him know one more time.

When someone held the door for me, handed me a final I didn't want to take, gave me a ride, talked with me for hours, fed me dinner, wished me luck in Florida, brought treats to ward prayer.. I've tried to do my best to let them know I appreciate them.

This post also is not being written to praise myself.

I've been working on this because it feels good. It felt good to read those texts from my roommate. It felt good to let my manager, my friends, my roommates, kind strangers know that what they did for me was noticed and made me feel loved and cared about and remembered.

I definitely haven't suddenly become the world's most selfless most humble most grateful individual. If my high school French class reunited today, I might very well give the same answer to biggest flaw question. I have a long way to go, but making the effort.. feels good.

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