Thanksgiving is tomorrow and we’re hosting this year. It’s a pot luck of families bringing different dishes. Matt and I are making the turkey and stuffing (gluten free this year!) brussels sprouts with bacon and some snacks. In preparation I went to the grocery store yesterday, early enough in the am that I thankfully missed the rush and as I knelt down on the floor putting things away, I burst into tears. It took me a minute to figure out why I was crying. Why all of a sudden I found myself face in hands in tears on the floor. It was from the thought of missing my parents. Missing them being a part of our dinner this year. If they were both alive and still living in Saratoga, they would probably be making the drive up here to have Thanksgiving with us. With my family.
They would be enjoying the boys. My dad would hang out and talk with Matt and build some Snap Circuit board with Mason, maybe even kick the ball around in the backyard with Miles. My mom would help cook. She would be loud and complain about who knows what. I would probably even be sighing with frustration from them being here, as people typically do about family on Thanksgiving. Because no one knows how to drive us crazy better than our own family. Have you seen the movie “Home For The Holidays”?
But they would be here.
I would get to enjoy them. Watch them with the boys. Smile and feel whole inside. Maybe this is partly why I’ve avoided hosting Thanksgiving for so long. Not wanting to fully acknowledge the hole that’s there. But it’s not too deep because the empty space is filled with so much love. Rebecca will be here and long time friends who are like family. There will be laughter and a kitchen filled with people bumping into each other. Kids running around and food, lots of food to be eaten.
My tears have stopped for now and I am thankful for all of the years that I did have with my parents. It’s funny how short the time feels that I had them both here. The last times we were all together as a family feels like such a long and faded memory. That makes me sad, but again, only for a moment. There are still groceries that need to be put away, wonderful boys to be entertained, dinner to be made and laundry to be done. Life goes on.
So, today, as I shed my tears of sadness and longing and joy from the memories of my parents, I give thanks for their contribution to my life. They helped mold me into who I am today. They loved me deeply. I felt it. All the time.
I hope you take a few moments to sit and think about what you’re truly grateful for this year and appreciate the people that are sharing your table, sharing your meal. Even if you’re rolling your eyes waiting for them to go home. Appreciate the time you’re spending together in any way you can.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone.