It's a Saturday morning as I write this. I've just finished adding next week's appointments to my balance sheet, and projecting my end of month. I do this often as a motivating or anxiety-soothing exercise. I am not the best at advanced math, but fortunately when it comes to accounting for a business like mine, you can do quite a bit with sums and averages. It looks as though I am headed for a fourth month straight of growth. In this unprecendented year of tulmult I am poised to hit my monthly visit targets by the end of the year. Despite my fears of a holiday slowdown, it looks as though Patient PT will instead continue to grow, albeit more slowly. After a dizzying ascent during the last few months, it is a slight relief. After the many ups and downs of 2020, it is a huge comfort to see slow growth instead of another worrying descent. So far, at least.

I crave consistency and predictability. I am optimistic by nature. But I cannot escape the reality that has been life in the United States since March of this year. We continue to sail unchartered territory. With it sails my still-young business, just beginning to raise a mast of it's own. This is the "future" that I looked toward for six long years of higher education, and it is all so much messier than I ever expected. There are ever-more violent storms likely still to come.

Amidst it all, I find myself at the unlikely center of a volunteer effort to provide free, clean fabric masks that has reaped endless rewards both physical and spiritual. The Bloomington Mask Drive has been recognized with five community awards and honors, and provided 40,000 masks in a city of 85,000 people. The cover image of this blog is of my sunset view during a free balloon ride that BMD cofounder Nola Hartman and I were gifted in thanks.

And so even though this week I will watch my favorite holiday pass by without fanfare and our future is ever more uncertain, I cannot help but feel grateful. Grateful it is not worse. Grateful for the decisions I made and the people I met this year. Grateful for my husband and the companionship he and my sweet pet rabbits have provided during an era of widespread loneliness. Grateful for my health, my patients, my business that has begun to thrive amidst all this calamity. Grateful to not be among the quarter million we have already lost, or the countless millions who grieve them. Yet. Grateful that there is something like an end in sight, thanks to promising new vaccines coming faster than ever in history. Grateful, more than anything, for those who have sacrificed and stood up to fight this pandemic in whatever way they can - from the healthcare workers on the front lines to the volunteers of Bloomington Mask Drive to the lonely and devastated folks who have simply stayed home and masked up. I am grateful that I am still here, and just as grateful that you are still here. Thank you for reading.

Here is a gallery of a few things I am thankful for from this year.