As I get older these holidays tend to mean more to me then when I was younger. Shall I dare say in my old age I'm getting soft? Psshhh never... well maybe a little.
Thanksgiving has always been a big thing in my family. My parents host Thanksgiving dinner where both sides of my huge, ethnically diverse family get together in all their rowdiness and stuff their faces until they can't anymore. In other words picture having Thanksgiving dinner with the United Nations and you'll hit pretty close to home.
Growing up I didn't realize just how different my Thanksgiving was from others. You see there has been Thanksgiving dinners where we've easily had 50 people over eating, drinking, and mingling. They weren't even all my family some of them where family friends, neighbors, friends of friends, quite honestly our motto was and still is "the more the merrier." I loved those years it was like one giant party and me of course being me I was all about the good times.
It's kind of sad though as we've all gotten older our Thanksgiving has decreased in size quite a bit. I mean we all have our own lives and live in different parts of the world. Which is only expected as you age but it does make Thanksgiving a little bitter sweet. Although now we have plenty of little ones running around to add to the mix of crazies.
I have found myself recently beginning to appreciate and consciously count my blessings more than I ever have before. Being thankful for the moments I get to spend with my parents preparing food the night before and waking up early the following day to start cooking. The time I spend with my brother peeling 20lbs of potatoes- yes we go through that much mash potatoes. My sister coming through with all her baked goods and three little ones following her. My many family members trickling in around 3:30pm to start their marathon of eating. Then the day after Thanksgiving, which my family refers to as "Second Supper," where everyone comes back over for a second time to finish up all the leftovers from the day before.
All of these moments I use to take for granted but now I find myself stepping back to mentally take pictures of it all. To soak in the feeling of family and be grateful that I'm able to know the feeling.
It's very easy to get lost in the day to day grind of it all. To loose focus of what really matters and who really matters. I mean I do it and I know most of us that are career focused can relate. But this is why it's important to check yourself. Especially when things start feeling tough or you start moving so fast you loose sight of what gives your life meaning.
So this Thanksgiving no matter where you are or who you are with take a second to step back and view the blessings in your life. They can be big ones or small ones. Hell you can be thankful for the fact that you are breathing or that you haven't lost your damn mind yet. Which if you're anything like me that is always a plus.
But count your blessings and smile because you've got a lot to be thankful for.