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Why I’m Remembering to Be Thankful This Thanksgiving

Maybe you’ve noticed that I stopped publishing new posts and responding to comments at the beginning of November. I greatly appreciate everyone who takes the time to read and comment, but the last few weeks have just been too difficult for me to respond. My husband and I took Christmas card photos this weekend, and I must have stared at the best one for thirty minutes last night, wondering how we managed to come through these weeks looking so unscathed.

Some things are too personal to publish for posterity, yet it’s impossible to write about anything else when they’re all you can think about. When I wrote about overcoming unfathomable circumstances last month, I had no idea how soon I would need to listen to my words. I may have made my peace with type 1 diabetes, but I’m not there yet with this. Maybe I never will be, or maybe in another three years, when I’ve matured into someone who won’t even recognize who I am today, I’ll be able to find the good.

For now, though, all I can do is try to move forward, and Thanksgiving seems like a fitting place to start. At first I was upset that Thanksgiving will forever be tied to the events of the last few weeks. It seemed like an especially cruel jab for someone who loves the holiday as much as I do. I bought my own set of Thanksgiving china when I was only eighteen, and I started working on this year’s activity, Turkey Trivia, in August.

However, the more I think about it, maybe it’s not such a bad thing that Thanksgiving is falling when I’m at my lowest. Maybe a reminder that I still have so much for which to be grateful is exactly what I need. As legitimate as my problems are, I’m pretty sure the Pilgrims had it worse. And yet, as terrible as they had it, they were still thankful.

These days it seems like Thanksgiving is often brushed aside for Christmas. Stores start replacing fall decorations with Christmas before Halloween, and Christmas trees are already up in countless homes. Sure, it’s not as flashy as some holidays, but there’s a quiet elegance to Thanksgiving that’s easy to overlook. There are no presents to buy or costumes to make. There’s no resentment towards greeting card or candy companies. There’s just family and friends gathered to remember that no matter how bad things get, we can always find something for which to be grateful.

This Thanksgiving my china is staying in the attic. For one year at least, my mother is reclaiming hosting duties. Maybe next Thanksgiving will be easier, and maybe it won’t be. Life has a way of throwing another obstacle at you just as soon as you’ve managed to overcome one. All I know is, this year I’ll be celebrating with my husband, parents, and grandmothers, and for that I am thankful.

2 thoughts on “Why I’m Remembering to Be Thankful This Thanksgiving

  1. Ashley, I am honored to read your words of love, pain, and faith. God will help you through this special holiday. Lean on him, your husband, and your family to help you through this holiday.

  2. Pain will lesson, that I can promise. Holiday’s will again become joyful. I remember asking God if he remembered who I was. I had heard so many times that he had a plan for me and would not give me more than I could bare. At the time I had even begin to doubt that God even exsited. I was so angry. How could this have happened, why did it happen? Things slowly became bareable and I began to find happiness again. I always remember what happened as the holidays start appearing in the distance, but now its different. New happy memories over take the painful ones. Although I will never forget, I have so much now to the Thankful for. Time will heal.

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