Every year for Thanksgiving, my family and I go around the table and say what we are thankful for. It started as something I did with my son, Khalub, when it was just the two of us. Somehow, the tradition held. No matter who we are with. It might be because it is not an unusual tradition, or maybe because it is something I insist upon every year. Regardless, it is something near and dear to my heart because I believe in gratitude. It’s a way of keeping us humble, it reminds us to be thankful for what we have, and I also think it’s a way to shed some light on some things that we might otherwise see as dark.
If you are new to my blog, you will know that I am no stranger to difficult situations. Almost three years ago now, I got out of a relationship that very well could have ended my life, a year (and a move across the country) later I lost my mom. Even before that I was no stranger to difficult times. Between loss, eating disorders (something I haven’t talked openly about), prior abuse and single parenting – I haven’t exactly been the poster girl for an easy life.
I also know that everyone has their own personal struggles and difficulties. It’s part of what makes us all unique. Life is messy, and it’s not always what it seems. This year, 2020, has been so many different things. It has been stressful, trying, emotionally and physically exhausting – the list goes on. This year has presented a different type of difficulty. Although we are all in different boats, we are all charting this unknown territory together. It is scary!
With all of the different types of challenges we are facing and have faced this year, I want to share with you all what I am thankful for. In an effort to share some light, hopefully spread some positivity, and to absolutely share my empathy with everyone…
I Am Thankful For My Family’s And My Overall Health
This year, the year that the “Novel Coronavirus” or COVID-19 swept the earth, I am thankful for my family’s and my health. I had my doubts about the severity of COVID at first, and I’m pretty sure almost anyone you ask would say they felt the same. Until it hits home, where a friend or family member has or had it. Some might even say that “It wasn’t / isn’t so bad”. Others will beg to differ. They may beg to differ so much, and plead with you to wear your mask because a close family member or friend of theirs is in the hospital fighting for their life.
I have known some people to have COVID-19 and not have any symptoms. I have also known some to have it and only have some of the symptoms. I have known some to have it and be hospitalized then thankfully be able to recover. I have also known people that have lost their lives to COVID-19.
In my household, three out of four of us who live here full time have had it (I still have it). We have all shown a different combination of symptoms, and one of us who’ve had it didn’t show any symptoms at all. None of my immediate family have been hospitalized, and we are all alive. For that – I am FOREVER grateful.
I Am Thankful For All Those Who Have Sacrificed
This is a lot, it’s so overwhelming and yet so humbling. I want to start out this section by honoring our troops. First and foremost I want to thank all of the troops who have sacrificed their lives for this beautiful country, and their families. In the past I have shared a recurring post on my personal Facebook remembering those troops who can’t be home for Thanksgiving or the holidays period. I have been in that position myself.
I would like to point out that even if some of these troops are in fact stateside, they can’t necessarily get leave or they might not have the funds to travel home for the holidays. My heart goes out to them. They made a sacrifice to choose our country over their families nonetheless – from the day they signed up for the military. The DFAC, or dining facility, offers these troops a “Turkey Dinner”. You’ve gotta give them props for putting it out there, but can you imagine eating Thanksgiving dinner in a facility that feels like a school or hospital lunchroom? For some, it’s not so bad, but yet it will never be the same.
This year, there are a lot of troops deployed in foreign and domestic territories. We still have troops in Iraq and Afghanistan, we also have a lot of National Guard troops deployed to cities (other than their own) to help with COVID-19 testing. I can’t even begin to know what this feels like, I can only imagine. I am thankful for them.
I also want to thank the healthcare workers. There has been a lot of talk about them being our frontline workers throughout COVID-19. In all reality, they are the end of the line workers. They are putting themselves in front of this virus day in and day out. Our healthcare workers are with the sickest of the sick trying to help these patients recover, when they are the most contagious. I also think it’s important to remember that just because COVID came to the table to play cards, it doesn’t mean that all the other illnesses folded and walked away. I can imagine how tired and exhausted they are.
I Am So Thankful For Everything I Have…
As I’ve mentioned before, I have been in positions where I have lost everything. A lot of people this year have. It is so humbling to sit here and be able to say that I (we) have more than what we need. I’m not rich, but I have a job. I don’t have a huge fancy home, but I have a home. My family is not perfect, but I have a very loving family. I’ve got people in my corner, and food in my belly.
I feel like I am being repetitive, because I have said all of these things on my blog before. So, my family, friends & fellow bloggers I will leave you with this: Happy Thanksgiving! I hope you all have a wonderful and safe holiday. Please don’t forget to be thankful for what you have, and tell the people you love that you love them. Tomorrow is not guaranteed.
P.S. I am a day late posting this, and I apologize. We just had such a great day yesterday and spent so much time cooking, and enjoying our time together – just those of us who live here. I hope you all had an equally great day.