Today, I will not be sad. I will choose happiness instead. In fact, today I will choose laughter. The kind that starts deep in my soul and comes bursting out like a cannonball. A peal of laughter that echoes through the air releasing its contagion to the innocent passerby who can’t help but laugh too. Today, I will not succumb to the parasitic drama. I will not be a willing host. Instead, I will repurpose my energy and free myself. I will remove the restraints and let go. And really, we all need to let go sometimes. Don’t we?

Today, I will not be “that” person – “that” person who is someone other than who she is in her core. That person who I have worked so hard to discover. Today I will be me. I will nurture my mind, my body, and my spirit. Not because I should, but because I can. And because for so long, I didn’t. Today I will remind myself that I am resilient so I will embrace my resilience – and thank it too. Since, after all, it helped lead me to today.

Today, I will go outside. I will break away from my desk and free my cluttered mind. I will walk, I will listen, I will discover. I will trade in the sedentary for the serenity found on a hidden path. Today I will do this because today is a new day. I will try to leave the past there – in the past – but be cognizant of what was reaped and what was sowed.

Aware enough so that I can learn and build from it; and accepting enough so that I can let it go.

Today, I will be the kind, compassionate, and caring person I was raised to be but I will not be a doormat. And when the vortex of ugliness tries to suck me down into its dark hollows, I will do my best to fight back. And should I lose sight of this, I pray for the nudge that brings me back around. When I’m tired – mentally, physically, and emotionally – and want to give up I won’t. Instead, I will tap into my humor, my strength, and my gumption.

And I will persevere.

Today, it is likely that I will drop the F-bomb – maybe once, maybe twice or maybe not at all. And when I do, I will do so with conviction and prudence. Today I will do my best to check my shit at the door, but I will own it too. I will not beat myself up for the extra pound or the pants that don’t fit the way they used to, or for eating the mocha chip ice cream. I will not compare myself to the skinny girl or the pretty girl or the favorite girl. And that’s damn hard because we live in a world filled with judgment and perception. The mirror can be hideous only when we allow it to be so. I promise that I will try to cast those comparisons aside. Because they are not me, and I am not them.

Today, I will accept my imperfections because they are part of me.

Today, I will not let my heartache because you are gone. Instead, I will open it up to happiness. I will do so because a closed heart cannot heal. I will let it feel. I will let it be. And I will remember the good times and the laughter. But most of all, I will remember the love. Today, I will not let the emptiness and the loneliness that often accompanies that void override the fulfillment, the beauty, and the joy.

Today, I will not let the heaviness besiege me but instead let it be a reminder that even at the bottom of the murkiest water there is life.

Today, I will feel the sunshine as it caresses my face and embraces me with warmth. And when the sun tucks itself away to slumber behind the clouds, I’ll try to make peace with its absence. And when the rain comes, I’ll listen as it narrates its story. Today, I will feel the breeze against my skin and welcome the scents that it carries with it. Another season is fulfilling its promise.

Today I will feel joy as I watch my canine child stand by the riverbank, with his snout in the air and his eyes closed – a picture of contentment. And as I ease down into my Adirondack chair at the end of a long day or the beginning of a new one, I promise to try and let the world stop, if but for a moment, and welcome mindfulness.

Today and each day I will seek to remember my ‘why.’

And if I should fail or stumble or lose my way, then I will come back here to this place.

And I will try again.

Today, tomorrow and each day after I will try again.


Laura Mikolaitis
Laura Mikolaitis
Laura credits her writing, which laid dormant for years, to her late mom, who always believed in her. Writing unabashedly from the heart and inspired by millions of moments, three tenets of evergreen advice that her mom always shared with her are her guiding principles. Whether it is poetry, fiction, or a personal essay, her love for the written word feeds her mind, body, and spirit. Laura’s creativity also comes to life in her passion for photography. Her ongoing love affair with the moon, her joy for family and friends, her connection to nature, and being a loving canine mom often become some of her best subjects. Laura has held many roles throughout her professional career, including Brand Manager, Project Manager, and Director of Global Business Development and Sales Operations. In addition, she has a background in consumer-packaged goods, manufacturing, and textiles. Laura currently works in biotechnology for Berkshire Corporation as their Product Marketing Manager. She holds a Master of Science degree in Communications and Information Management from Bay Path University and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from SUNY Oswego. Originally from Northern NY, Laura resides with her husband and canine child in a small town in Massachusetts that captured her heart years ago.

DO YOU HAVE THE "WRITE" STUFF? If you’re ready to share your wisdom of experience, we’re ready to share it with our massive global audience – by giving you the opportunity to become a published Contributor on our award-winning Site with (your own byline). And who knows? – it may be your first step in discovering your “hidden Hemmingway”. LEARN MORE HERE


  1. So much freedom, choice, and resilence! I loved this Laura! I felt you look at your world from a new perspective that was empowered and yet so very real and inspired. Forgiving and yet anticipatory of each day one at a time – not perfect, but you making the best of them. So nice to hear your dot connecting today. Have a really awesome week – sharp stuff!

    • Maureen, thank you for your encouraging words – I truly appreciate them. Lately, I feel like I’ve forgotten a bit who that person was that penned this piece initially a couple of years ago. But, we go through different seasons of our lives, and I know that that person still resides within me. She’s hibernating a tad but will emerge from the cocoon stronger. It’s funny, in a moment of “I’m not good enough,” the other morning, I asked for a sign that I should keep writing. Then, Dennis published this piece. And yesterday, another one. Both signs to me that I need to keep going, and that the dots will connect eventually. Thank you for reading, Maureen, and your engagement.

    • Thanks so much, Paula! I’m happy that you found it uplifting. I remember the day that I wrote it – it is an older piece. I was in a positive space and making headway that felt right. Lately, however, I’ve felt a bit less than what you read here, but I know it is all part of my evolution and growth. So, it’s good to reread where I was and know that with the hard work, you can be the best version of yourself. I appreciate your support and encouragement – thanks for being a bright spot in my day!

    • It’s amazing what time can do… and trusting the process is really just keeping the faith. Your a bright spot in my day too! Thank you!

  2. Thank you for this beautiful invitation to be ourselves-perfectly imperfect, to embrace the richness of our lives and ourselves in all the nuanced ways we and life shows up. What a beautiful essay, Laura! Your essay reminds me of the quote about it’s not what happens, but how we choose to respond. Don’t remember at the moment who said it…. I especially appreciate the out of the gate early in the essay focus on today I will choose laughter-the infectious kind-which is not the muffled suppressed giggle….. 🙂

    • Laura, thank you for reading my words and for your always encouraging and uplifting comments. You radiate positivity, and I love that about you. How we choose to respond plays such an essential part in what happens next – or at least that is what I find. Reacting in anger often begets anger. Walking away, taking a breath, and then responding calmly, can have a different effect. Not a deep level example, but I know you understand what I mean.

      Lately, I feel like I forget to focus on today, which is why I’m so glad Dennis published this older piece when he did. Timing is everything, and I needed this connector to help reassure me that I can come out on the other side. It’s funny, I feel disconnected and hollow in an area of my life right now, but here, I feel fulfilled. Thank you for being a part of the fulfillment.

  3. Laura, I appreciate the great insights you have shared – thank you.

    I come that school of belief that Life is God’s most precious gift, but it is how we choose to live this gift that gives us full meaning and appreciation of what is truly important. Life is indeed a challenge – an experience.

    I also believe that honorable Time is our second most precious gift because we only have a set amount of it.

    Like you so gracefully explained, every day we are faced with choices. Some of those choices are good and helpful to us and to others. Others are bad and are hurtful to ourselves and to others. But whether we choose good or bad, at the end of the day, what we do is a choice. It’s our choice.

    We should also remember that to Give of ourselves is the perhaps the most noble gift we can give ourselves and to others.

    • Thank you, Jonathan. I appreciate you taking the time to read this piece and for sharing your thoughts about it. I agree with your assertion about life and time. They are gifts, and we should treat them as such. I know for me, I used to get swallowed up by the negative. So much so that it overshadowed my ability to see past it. It’s been a long journey of self-discovery but worth the work, energy, and time expended.

      As I mentioned to Jeff in my reply to him, this is an older piece of mine that Dennis kindly recirculated. Its timing couldn’t be better as I am in a funk right now and working through it as best as I can. I know that I’ll get through it, especially with such uplifting comments and encouragement as yours and others.

  4. “I will remove the restraints and let go. And really, we all need to let go sometimes. Don’t we?” Ain’t that the truth! Your beautiful piece here, Laura, reminds me of something President Obama said during his remarks at what was his last Washington Press Corp dinner, and I paraphrasing here: “When I move on, I’m going to have a list that rhymes with ‘Bucket list.'” The audience roared, and we need to roar, too. We all need to write various things down on that second list — and then just move on.

    • Thanks so much, Jeff. I love Obama’s paraphrase that you shared – it made me roar! But it’s true. We do need that second list. If for nothing else, than to see it with our eyes and be able to put it to rest. It’s easy to hold on to things, especially the negative. I believe that is one of the reasons I wrote this piece. It’s almost two years old, but Dennis kindly recirculated it, and I am grateful for its timing.

      I’ve been in a funk (for lack of a better term) lately and feel like I need to pivot, and it’s challenging not to let the “I’m not good enough” take over. So, to reread this piece and to feel the beautiful energy of your comments and others is quite healing for me. But most of all, a reminder to get out of my head and carry on. Now, here’s hoping I can.