Thanksgiving 2015 – New Forms of Thankfulness

Happy belated Thanksgiving, everyone! I hope you had a great day filled with lots of food, love and happy new memories.

As I’ve gotten older, Thanksgiving has become one of my favorite holidays. And (shocker) as delicious as it is, the food is the reason. It’s because I’ve realized how how important spending time with my loved ones is, and how important it is to reflect on the many ways life has blessed, and continues to bless, me. Maybe it’s not Thanksgiving that’s my favorite, per se, but quality time in general.

This year feels a little different as I reflect on the people and circumstances in my life. A lot of things have changed, and life has served me up new forms of thankfulness. Here a couple of ways things are different this year:

  1. My sister, who lives many miles away, got married. While I realize this might mean not seeing her as much every single holiday (her husband couldn’t get time off to visit this holiday season), I am thankful that she found a loving, caring family to also be a part of.
  2. My former stepmother is moving to Florida in three weeks. This, like number 1, is very bittersweet for me. This woman stepped up and raised me, giving me a very normal upbringing when it otherwise would have been in shambles. Since things with her and my dad fell apart ~7 years ago, she’s been living on her own in my hometown, just a four hour drive away from me. I know she’ll be happier in Florida, but it makes me sad knowing I won’t be able to just hop in a car and see her anymore. But ultimately her happiness is my happiness, so I am thankful for her move. And hey, I have another reason to regularly visit Florida now.
  3. My family celebrated Thanksgiving with my brother-in-law’s family this year. Although he’s been with my sister since before I was even born, I never really met anyone from his family beside his parents. I am thankful that I got to meet the others and get a sense of being a “big happy family.”
  4. Speaking of big happy family, this was the second Thanksgiving I celebrated with Lawrence’s family. Over the months as I’ve grown close to Lawrence I’ve also grown close to his loved ones. At first, I felt genuinely welcomed and now I just really feel like I’m a part of the gang and it’s great. It’s another (relatively new) way to be thankful.

Moral of the story? Life never stops changing. It can be tempting to yearn for how things were in the past, but that doesn’t do anything but hinder you from taking advantage of the present. I’ve certainly been thrown a few punches throughout my life, but each time I’ve come to realize that everything is fine in the end. The best thing you can really do is be thankful for “the now.”You can clutch the past so tightly to your chest that it leaves your arms too full to embrace the present.

P.S. Speaking of change, I’m getting a pretty big hair cut tonight!!! 🙂 Goodbye, long hair! Hello, new short(er) hair!

 

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