The smell of pumpkin spice wafting through the air, flickering candles on the kitchen counter, and the onset of chilly weather announce the approach of one of the best holidays of the year-thanksgiving. With anticipation for all of the good food that comes with this holiday, along with my routinely hectic life, sometimes I forget about what this holiday is all about. Originating from 1621, the pilgrims who settled Plymouth hosted a Thanksgiving feast celebrating and giving thanks for the year’s harvest. Now it is a day set aside to gather with family and simply give thanks. So, like every year, the fundamental question of this holiday pops up: What am I thankful for?
Well, I’m thankful for a lot of things, so maybe the better question to ask is what am I most thankful for?
I’m definitely most thankful for my family and health. I know… being thankful for family is commonplace. But it is an important aspect to be thankful for because it is absolutely lovely and so universal, making it generic, as it should be. My family has shaped me into the person I’ve become. (I know, that is also cliche, but it’s true). In my last post, I talked about how important family is to me. Not only is my family always there for me, they also love unconditionally. So no matter my mood, no matter how grumpy or rude or crazy I am, they love me. Along with love, they also provide support and motivation and laughter and happiness. One of my most favorite time of about every day is dinner time. In my family, we have family dinners practically every night. We usually just sit and talk, tell stories, crack jokes, laugh, and just have a happy time. There is a special bond between family, an unfailing trust, and constant support and love that make family, without a doubt, the thing I am most thankful for.
I also mentioned that I am thankful for my health. Good health is one of those things that you don’t appreciate until you don’t have it or see someone else suffering from lack of it. Last Thursday, I volunteered at a nursing home to help serve a thanksgiving dinner that the nursing home hosted for their residents. We went into Memory Care, an area set aside from the main nursing home for residents in extremely fragile conditions. It was heartbreaking to see how lifeless and dependent all the residents were. Some just sat slumped in their wheelchairs staring blankly at walls. One man tried for quite a while to put a sock on his foot and was ultimately unsuccessful. Putting on socks is such a simple activity that we take for granted, and seeing that man’s struggle made me appreciate my health a little more. Family and good health are more than important. They are also two necessary factors for a happy life, and I am so thankful for them.