Every Thanksgiving I try to reflect on all the things for which I am grateful. It’s easier now that I am not the one scurrying to put the feast on the table.
Everyone who has ever put together a Thanksgiving dinner for a crowd knows you need the energy of a two year old, the patience of a saint, the knowledge of a chemist, and the ability to keep your head while bringing all those talents together.
You then watch with pride as what took your hours, days, to prepare is decimated in minutes.
It’s also easier now that I’m not the one to try to keep peace between friends and relatives who will discuss politics and sports no matter how often we make those subjects taboo for Holiday gatherings.
I can look back now and smile at the Thanksgiving when one sister-in-law became so incensed with a brother-in-law that she threw a crescent roll across the table and hit him squarely between the eyes. The look on his face is something I will never forget. I will also never forget the sinking feeling in my stomach as I imagined my wonderful dinner turned into a food fight ala Animal House.
As I pictured my good china turned into small pieces useful only for mosaic crafting Grandma suddenly turned from frail old lady into Super Mom. She then used that parade ground voice mother’s can find when needed and told everyone to “freeze”. Everyone did.
She then proceeded to dress them down as most hadn’t been dressed down since they were in grammar school. Little ears at the children’s table really enjoyed it if their parent’s did not. Food fight avoided. I was very thankful for that.
Barbara’s roll toss became part of our family’s Thanksgiving lore and even Jay, who was the target learned to laugh about it. It only took ten years. Mostly because he knew that he’d been obnoxious and was lucky she hadn’t thrown the gravy boat.
My father, God rest his soul, was fond of telling of the time that the turkey was carved when it wasn’t done. Unfortunately Dad was telling the story at wife number three’s table when it was wife number two, my mother, who was guilty of serving undercooked turkey once long ago.
Dad couldn’t remember which wife but he sure remembered that turkey. Dad, not the most sensitive of men, never understood the outrage his little jibe caused. I’m thankful we got through those Thanksgivings without bloodshed.
I am also grateful that I can think of Thanksgiving as a time of reflection and self-inspection not as an entry into the shopping season. Shopping has turned into a full contact sport for many. At my age if I can’t take it with me what good is it?
I am no longer able to stand in lines waiting for some sale even if I wanted to do that. I don’t. I was never interested in doing it. I don’t understand it and I’m thankful I don’t. When “things” become more important than the reasons for the seasons I am thankful I still remember and cherish the reasons.
I am thankful to still be around to celebrate this holiday. I am thankful for all the friends and family that are still speaking to me after I refused to support or vote for their candidate of choice – especially after I told them why.
I am thankful that I am not a worshipper of some political candidate and still know that worship is reserved for God. I respect your right to worship in your own way but I do not respect worshiping some human being. That’s blasphemy and personally I am against it. Actually so is God:
You shall have no other gods before Me. – Given that this heads the list of the 10 Commandments you might gather that God thinks its important. Actually the most important.
You shall not make idols. – That probably means some silly candidate for public office ya’ll.
That’s only two of the commandments and I am thankful that some people still remember them. I would be more thankful if more people did. Note, they are Commandments not suggestions.
I am thankful for friends, far and near with whom I can laugh. Without laughter life would be like a dish without any seasoning. Laughter spices up life, lights up your eyes, makes your wrinkles point up instead of down and makes you feel warm inside when the world is cold and unfriendly.
I’m thankful that in my “golden” years I have access to a computer. For me it is a window to a world I cannot enter physically most of the time any more. It gives me companionship and friends. It informs me and angers me. It wakes me up and it bores me. It makes me feel alive. Yes, I am very thankful for my computer.
I am thankful that I’m an American. We may have our problems and we may have to share this great nation with a lot of unworthy people but it’s still the best place on earth to be.
God has already blessed America. I pity those that don’t know that and aren’t thankful for that. They’re missing a lot.
Happy Thanksgiving my friends, may your day be filled with good food, good friends and no food fights.