|My beloved insisted we use this photo: Peeps from a Thanksgiving past...notice Jeff is pouring a drink in the background. And my turkey is drinking ginger-ale.|
I have a joke, albeit a bad one, that from the week before Halloween till the day after Miss Norah’s birthday (mid-January), my life is a disaster. I just triage as best I can.
The last few weeks are no exception.
I shared a booth at a craft event with my dear flower girl. I made it one of the two days, my wonderful mom jumped in when I couldn't get out of bed for day two. I've been in bed more than out and I’m not even close to my 50% benchmark. But, as hard as I try to say no to commitments and lock our life down; well it just keeps moving at warp speed.
Jeffrey left last Monday for a business trip and my mom graciously steeped in to help with my four daily shots and ground transport for the kids on the cold mornings. Mind you we just celebrated her 70th birthday and she still works full time. She just told me that for the next three weeks, she is running the company that she works for while the GM is out of the country. We are talking 100’s of employees and she is doing all of that while keeping me afloat. So when Jeffrey returned, he rolled-in just in time to watch Ian go under with the stomach bug. So as I type here in my bed, thanks to my awesome flu shot, on a very cold Sunday and while Ian putters close by; my dynamic duo are attending mass, hitting the grocery and keeping up our appearances!
So that gives you a sense of the world as we prepare to host my favorite holiday of the year on Thursday. That’s right fellow Pilgrimage travelers, I’m a Thanksgiving girl. And it has nothing to do with the meal; it’s the ritual.
I love Thursday because we are all one on this day. It’s the most encompassing holiday for Americans. It’s what unites us in this busy unpredictable present day world. We all want that moment to sit down and look around us and know at our core we belong; we are loved and we are valued. In all our brokenness, in all our dysfunction, we have a spot, a place at the table, a place in this world. That is why Thanksgiving is meaningful to me. At whatever table you sit, it is home, if even for just one night.
I have had Thanksgiving in Seattle, where we had the peeps who couldn't fly home Shrimp Creole and margaritas non traditional Thanksgiving. That one produced some legendary stories (I always think of those very special friends on this day!). I’ve had Thanksgiving dinner at Disneyland, and at my first real job’s boss’ house, and in a seafood restaurant a month after my step-dad died. I’ve hosted Thanksgiving for the better part of the last 15+ years. My mom and Aunt Susan knew before I did I was pregnant with Ian, was on bed-rest with Norah with a midnight call to the OB for my horrible cough that woke the entire house full of family. Jeffrey and I have cooked this meal in countless kitchens and with too many people I love to count.
The only constant at all these meals, my Jeffrey. The guest lists have changed, we have added two beautiful children, we have taken in friends, family, friends of friends, friends of family.
Our table is always a mystery and always a gift.
That is why it’s my favorite holiday. It’s not that we are doing anything that is miraculous. We just open our home and hearts to whatever crazy and delicious meal we roll out to share with an assortment of friends and family.
I realized that I had turned them into Thanksgiving people too!
But, up until we sit down, we are always ready for more. You see, Thanksgiving is the most profound opportunity to love.
Every year, no matter where we are, I look down the table and what I see is Jeffrey holding up my world, creating a better one with me, one meal at a time.
So this year as you hustle and bustle to make the world a better place, remember Thanksgiving as a verb--the action of loving, the state of loving, the occurrence of loving.
Because to me, that is what thankfulness is all about.
Happy Thanksgiving, my fellow travelers.
photo credit: PilgrimageGal