Today was a beautiful day in Bloomington. Sun shining. Not too hot. I ate my lunch outside today before I laid down in the grass on the banks of Clear Creek (or as it is known on campus, the Jordan River). Using my backpack as a pillow, I just laid there soaking up the sun. It was a perfect lunch hour on a beautiful day. And it gave me plenty of time to reflect on the book I just finished reading.
Talk about an inspiration. This book had me crying from page one. A story of courage and hope? It is so much more than that. It is a story of miracles. It is a story of perseverance. It is the most beautiful love story I have ever read. I started following the congresswoman's political career when I was studying in Washington, DC. I visited the Senate office of her good friend Kirsten Gillibrand of New York and I had a classmate who worked in her office. In fact, I'm pretty sure that he still does. Part of me has always wanted to be a politician. Part of me still wants to go into politics. And I would want to be a leader like Gabrielle Giffords. She was poised to be something special. A senator, governor of Arizona. Maybe even more one day. But no matter how far her career took her, she never forgot her roots in Tucson. She took a stand time and time again -- even when her views were not popular in her home state.
The assassination attempt made on that Saturday at that grocery store in Tucson was a tragedy. 6 dead, a dozen more wounded. It left her shot in the head, in a coma, without the ability to talk or move the right side of her body. Most people would have given up. Most people would have lost all hope. But if you've seen Gabby Giffords on TV these days, you know that she hasn't at all. She may have resigned from her Congressional seat, but she'll be back. I know she will.
Her husband, astronaut Mark Kelly, tells of Gabby's favorite song, U2's "Beautiful Day." How Bono approached him to do a tribute to Gabby. I watched this video today as I sat in the library. And I cried. It really is a beautiful day. If I have learned anything from reading the biography of this extraordinary woman it is that everyday is a beautiful day.