For my mother – because Thanksgiving is our holiday. More than any other, this is the holiday where I celebrate mothers and daughters. Because this is now Jessie’s holiday too – and I know that the only way my mother will give up hosting it in her house is when Jessica is old enough to host it in her own home, because Jessie is the only one who loves it as much as she does. This Thanksgiving, I’m grateful for my mom, and for my oldest daughter, because you guys make my Thanksgiving a day to look forward to every year.
For my husband, who created traditions with Sam and Julie that mean as much to them as Jessie’s traditions mean to her. You three will go out for dinner tonight, somehow, in the show, and will snuggle up together to watch movies and then watch the parade tomorrow morning. I’ve watched the anticipation build – and those kids are so excited about having this special time alone with Daddy.
I’m grateful for the past few months, for the struggle and the worries and the stress. Not because I’ve enjoyed it, because I didn’t. And it’s not over, but I can see the light at the end of the tunnel, and I’m proud of us for coming thru it. This hasn’t been easy, there’s been no time. The kids and I have missed Marc, Marc has missed us. Between working and studying – our time together has been reduced to a few snatched minutes here and there. But we’re still here. We’re still us – he’s my partner and my love, and our kids know that we do this together.
I’m grateful for the teachers and staff at Flagg Street School, Goddard Scholars Academy and the JCC. Because my kids are thriving, and excited to be learning. Each one of them are growing and changing in new ways – and I’m so grateful for the environment that they get to be in each day. For the friends and the math homework and the powerpoint and the letters and the Cam Jansen mysteries that challenge them, inspire them, and make up such a huge part of their days.
I’m grateful for a car that may be held together with wire and tape, but it starts for me every morning, let me change the radio station and enables my kids to rock out to Bob Seger, The Eagles and Carol King, as well as sing in a foreign language. The doors may be decorated with their sticker collection, and it’s never really clean – but it’s where we spend a huge portion of our days, and there’s magic that happens there. There’s a lot of yelling and squabbling too, but there are conversations in that car that surprise me and makes me grateful.
I’m grateful for the Beth Israel, for the place where my kids feel safe and loved, and are able to embrace their Judaism in a way that I love so much more than I ever anticipated I would. I would never have predicted that I’d have a synagogue on a gratitude list, but there you go.
This hasn’t been an easy year. But it was a year with enormous growth and challenge and change, and I’m grateful to have survived it. I’m grateful to be here, in this place, with this man and these children. And I’m also grateful that they’re all still asleep, and I have time for a second cup of coffee and a hot shower before the chaos begins.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!