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The Thankful Ones

Thanksgiving is long gone. The turkey has been roasted and carved. The pie has been served and eaten one, twice, three times over. The family members have gone home and Friendsgiving is also a faint memory. Seems like the week just flew right on by. On that day though, if you're lucky, you are filled with so much joy. The great hope is that the thankfulness continues long after.

I'm currently in a family that's broken. I don't remember my parents together. My old marriage has long gone bye-bye. This means no more hosting large dinners in my old dining room which I never really appreciated. I'm not sad about it anymore. It's a part of progression. I still cook a big meal like I used to. The holidays brings me a special kind of fullness that I can't describe and I'd like to pass that feeling on to my son. This year, it was just he and I for hours.

Dinner would be hosted at my brother's place. Which meant I was only in charge of a few things; the ham, yams, freshly baked bread and a pumpkin pie (the inspiration that I created from scratch in the image above, which I am quite proud of). I woke up at 4:30 in the morning to do it all. By about 10 am my son was up and moving around. Before then, our apartment was warm and quiet. A big contrast to days of old; Everyone awake and moving all around me while I worked in the kitchen. I don't miss that either, the congestion of too many people. This is my new and I'm thankful for it.

At around 3 pm Sir shows up to see our son for a while. He brought me a dozen red roses and said that he was thankful for me. I'm always cautious of how I treat him as that affects how he treats me, how he treats us. He was being sweet today. I'm finishing up so I can get ready to head out. He's hovering. Over our son mostly, but occasionally over me as well. There are the eyes mostly and then sometimes his mouth betrays him. He misses watching me put on my makeup and the feeling that I bring. I understand what he means as I too used to have these feelings and sometimes if I'm not totally careful, they try to slip in still. On Thanksgiving Day, I am thankful that I didn't give in to how he was feeling for me. I call it the comfortable place. Although, it's not comfortable at all. I stay in my lane and he tries to stay in his the best he knows how, at the time. My son and I head to dinner and Sir goes his own way. This is how it should be, because before didn't work and still won't for too many reasons.

At around 4:30 pm we arrive at my brother's house. The door is slightly ajar and there's warmth and good smells escaping. A feeling of home. We let ourselves into the soft loud of our family. In this safe setting, it only consists of the siblings, my brother's soon to be spouse, their dog and a family friend or two. It's a different kind of comfort and I'm glad I came. Actually, I wouldn't miss it. Then about thirty minutes into our visit, my mother calls on brother's phone and they are having a nice conversation. A feeling seeps in slowly as if someone put a jacket over my shoulders, a wet one. I look at my brother and his easy smile and manly frame brings ease. I remove the mental jacket, because I remind myself that I don't have to speak to anyone if I don't feel like it, even my mother. She passes a message through my brother for me. I accept it and send a nice gentle greeting right back. That is what I can muster in that moment and it's just fine. There's no discussion and no big dwelling emotion behind it. I am glad because that was easy.

At about 6 pm after lots of cheer and chatter, it's time to eat the large, hot meal that was prepared with care. The thankful ones join hands in thanks and praise for all that we have gratefully received. After which, we serve ourselves and find seats and standing space in their deluxe apartment in the sky. I eat my delicious dinner near the window so I can watch the traffic move in and out of the Lincoln Tunnel. The view is spectacular and it brings me solace. I think to myself for a brief moment, what Sir is up to...Is he lonely? Is my mother lonely? Visiting here in the city and her children are in another borough celebrating separately? I finally decide that it's not up to me to change those things for others while sacrificing how I feel about past transgressions. It's not up to me to fix them alone. They will repair in time and heal in a way unexpected or they won't and I'll be grateful for either or.

By 10 pm, we've all enjoyed each other. Dessert was had and to-go containers were over packed for tomorrow's delight. hugs and kisses were shared and rides were given. I'm back home with a good parking spot and was cozy in my bed. I closed my eyes and was eternally thankful for the wonderful new way of celebrating. How did it come about? I don't know, but it was awesomely calm. A decision was created to celebrate only with a small group of family and I was included in it. The lesson in this is, there are many solutions you only have to choose and stick with the one that works best for you. This helps mostly when the decision is not made alone nor out of spite. It may not be totally traditional, but new traditions can always be implemented and it was.

T H A N K S, J A S

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