Every year at Thanksgiving I try to calm the chaos for a moment, beg people to put down forks and drinks, plead with the children to stop talking, and I ask everyone to share one thing they’re thankful for this year. I think it’s good for the kids to get a chance to hear what others consider to be blessings. We always get funny comments – pacifiers, blankies, cookies. We get some sweet ones – sisters, moms, dads. And then we get some serious ones that cause us to stop and say a quiet thank you in reply.
Last year in the midst of the hubbub my father-in-law quietly told us he was just thankful to be there with us. We all paused for a moment and recognized the fact that for a brief while the previous winter we thought we were losing him. The relief of watching him heal and come back from the brink was intense, but we all quickly moved on, thrilled to be able to return our lives to normal.
His comment made our Thanksgiving last year extra meaningful and I was grateful that he had brought it up. It’s good to be reminded of all the things that make our lives wonderful – the little things and the really big things.
Our dinners are generally a small family affairs, but this year I’d love to tell more than a handful of people what I’m thankful for, not in a braggy way, just in a “I hope you also have many wonderful blessings making your days beautiful.”