I had thirty people to my house for Thanksgiving. There wasn’t enough room, there was barely enough food, and I think it was one of the best Thanksgivings we ever had. Of course, I probably say that every year!
As I was musing about what a great day it was, I was pondering all the reasons that made it so: I loved all the young people that were there…the new and old friends of Gabrielle’s that “were orphaned this Thanksgiving and needed a place to go.” My oldest friends of thirty plus years that were still upholding the tradition of getting together that we started so long ago were present. There were new people I had never met that I fell in love with. There were dogs and babies and somehow we all managed to squeeze in and eat and laugh and make merry. There were yard games and charades later in the evening and a mess that would rival the Thanksgiving Day Parade. I was exhausted and elated. What a magnificent day!
As I continued perusing the joy of the experience, I turned to thoughts of my mom and dad, grandparents and uncles and aunts who started this whole craziness. The entire family, whenever it could, gathered together to celebrate this holiday. I proudly cooked my mother’s turkey in her same roasting pan, using the same recipe that had been passed down to her. I grieved just a bit that I could not make that yearly call to have her walk me through how to make the gravy (even though I could do it very well on my own)! I took several moments to pause in gratitude for this ritual of family and celebration, this loving tradition, which was so powerfully taught to me, ingrained in me, by my family.
Soon, it will be time for my daughter to accept the duty of this tradition: to bring it into her own home and teach her own children the importance of carrying this into their future. I know I have taught her well. And that she will always cook her turkey breast down, on low, overnight, just like her great grandma did. And I will be smiling and watching and proud. Traditions need to be carried on into our future. May we never be too busy, or too distracted, to stand by them.