“When life gives you a hundred reasons to cry, show life that you have a thousand reasons to smile.”

Right now we all feel like we have one hundred reasons to cry. Fear. Fear is a big one. Fear of getting sick, of our children or elderly parents developing the virus. Fear of finances is my big one. I’ve been the food bank single mom, the caregiver with no insurance, the person who files bankruptcy. There were tears and barely any smiles back then.

Being safe at home still feels like you’re stuck at home no matter how you spin it. Being your child’s teacher when you feel totally ill-equipped might be one of those one-hundred reasons to cry.

You’re unemployed, the future of the small business you lovingly built is at risk, and you’re tired of your cooking. Sound familiar?

But there are a thousand reasons to smile. The sun is out today. You get to video chat with your grandkids. You’re falling in love with your spouse all over again now that you’re spending so much time together. You’re learning skills you never knew you had and finding out you’re good at new things. The list really is long.

I love this quote from Chuck Swindoll. “The remarkable thing is we have a choice every day regarding the attitude we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past…we cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way. We cannot change the inevitable. The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have, and that is our attitude…I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me and 90% how I react to it. And so it is with you…we are in charge of our attitudes.”

During this time my dog is helping me with my attitude. He needs to be walked every day, I have to find ways to keep him engaged, we are finding new places to walk I had yet to discover. My dog gives me a schedule each day which is a healthy way to live.

Our attitude will get us through this time of confusion. But our dogs will help our attitudes in so many ways. How has having a dog helped you to smile instead of cry? Share pictures and stories that will give us reasons to smile. We need them just like we need our dogs.