Thanksgiving is a day of gratitude, family, friends, and too much food, if you are fortunate. I am grateful for these things, but I find myself spending this holiday with just me and my husband, for the second year running. Of all the holidays we celebrate in the U.S., it is my favorite.
Growing up, there was always a house full of family – grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins, second cousins, parents, and siblings. Through many of life’s circumstances, that is not what my children experienced. We had smaller family holidays, usually spent with family who lived close enough to drive for the day. My husband and I are both from divorced homes. We have moved often. Our families have moved all around the country.
Our son, who lives almost nine hours by car, is spending the day with his wife’s family and an assortment of strangers, because his in-laws always open their home to people who aren’t with their families for the holiday. He texted to say he wishes he were here. I wish that, too.
Our daughter, who lives five minutes by car, is spending the day with my mother, step-father, aunt, uncle, cousins, and extended family. That is the family I grew up with and they have all moved south and are five hours away. There will be over forty people gathered to celebrate.
My mother called to say that she is sorry my husband and I will be alone for Thanksgiving. She wasn’t sorry enough to invite us. She likes to get my daughter and her family all to herself – in this case, with forty other people. I’m baffled. She has invited them in the past and tried to keep it a secret. Haha! My daughter and I don’t keep secrets. In spite of how this sounds, I get along with my mother, because I have learned to accept her. I can’t change her.
My father and step-mother, and my husband’s family, live too far away to drive there in a day. It has been a very long time since we have had a holiday with any of them. We will talk on the phone.
I am grateful for my family. I will miss them today.
Holidays stress me out, so you’d think I might be thankful for a quiet day with my husband. I have that every day. A little stress might have been welcome. We will be going to our favorite restaurant and a movie. It will be lovely. I am grateful.