If you asked me why Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday (and it is by the way), I might tell you it’s because Christmas stresses me out or because Thanksgiving is all about the delicious food. And while the food and the lack of having to stress about what gifts to give people is a definite plus, those answers aren’t really true. The reason Thanksgiving is my favorite is because it’s honest, pure and simple. It’s about family. And family is number one in my book.
From a young age I was taught that family was important. My extended family (an upwards of 30 people) gathered at my Grandmother’s house every Sunday for lunch. If that isn’t love, I don’t know what is…I’d die (slight exaggeration) if I had to cook for 30-ish people every week. I didn’t realize it at the time, but I was lucky in the regard that I had a family so close that was dedicated to spending time together. They say it takes a village to raise a child and those family members were and certainly are my village.
As I’ve grown and moved (along with most of my other cousins), I’ve sadly come to the realization that my own children will probably never experience the close bond of extended family that I was blessed with. My children still have a village though. It’s a carefully picked one of friends, church and school, but there is something special about the village that you didn’t choose…your family…the crazy uncle, the weird cousin, the funny aunt…the ones who will gather around the table this Thanksgiving and talk about relatives and times long gone.
For me, Thanksgiving is about getting back to roots. It’s about embracing where you came from and sharing those ideals, traditions and experiences with your children. Whether you family drives you nuts or brings you the greatest joy or both, I hope you give thanks for them on this special holiday.