This Thanksgiving we sat around the table among the cedar trees and instead of describing what we were thankful for, we went around and shared what we liked most about this season. Now there were many underlying tones of thankfulness in each of these stories be it the food, the family, or whatever else was shared.
I had some time to think about what I wanted to say being that I was seated in the middle of the sea of people we had at our table :) and I came to the conclusion what I liked the most about our Thanksgiving seasons is that they are always different. No two have truly ever looked alike. I think my family loves the concept of being traditional, but I wouldn't exactly put us at the center of what a "traditional" Thanksgiving looks like. We have spent them in Hawaii, Southern California, Northern California, family's houses, friends houses. made the feast ourselves, had buffet style, gone out and bought the day of, had take out. Yet we have always been together. There are the off years when one side of the family will spend it with their "other" side of the family or where we have combined families altogether. But to me the heart of the matter is that we have been together no matter the season or circumstance.
I love my family very much. I look around the table and see bits and pieces of what makes up me. I also see the voids of those who have passed away and how greatly their presence is missed or those who just choose to no longer sit at our table for one reason or another. Them I miss. But for the most part I am content with what I see and who I am surrounded by. I know this won't last forever and I know it is but a blink of an eye before things change. The family grows larger, kids grow into adults, get married, and begin their own Thanksgiving "traditions". Yet no matter where they go I will think of them and love them, even from afar. For now I am grateful they are close, and that I get this time with them because they mean more to me than they will ever know.