Reflections on Thanksgiving 2020

This year, 2020, will go down in history as an incredibly trying year.  Since the early spring there has been much fear in the air, due to a worldwide pandemic.  It has been 8 months already, and there are many more months ahead of us filled with death and suffering before a vaccine should become available.  When thousands die each day from this disease you know it affects everyone.  When millions of people in our country must wait on huge lines at food banks, because of economic hardship, you know it affects so many Americans with even more fear than just getting sick.

During this Thanksgiving holiday it might feel exceedingly difficult to find things in which to be grateful for.  Having the “wisdom to accept the things I cannot change” gives me an opportunity to find my gratitude even during a time like this.    

On Thanksgiving Day my whole family came together in one way or another.  Pat and I are blessed with an exceptionally large immediate family.  Children and grandchildren, significant others, fiancés and even some recently married.  We are so blessed, and I absolutely love them all.  However, COVID has made it that we cannot be with any of them on this most celebrated holiday.  Pat and I, for our own safety must leave them to celebrate on their own.  Sure, I feel terrible that many of them will be together, and we will be alone.  But they are all so beautiful, and I feel such gratitude for having them all in my life.  The adult children will cook the food, take care of our house, and make sure that this wonderful holiday is celebrated as it always is.  Pat cooked so many of the family favorites and left it for them, but they are baking, and cooking also to make sure that our family does not miss a beat. 

Jake and Emma will miss us, and that is a tribute to our close relationship with them, of which I am most grateful.  They know we are travelling by car to Florida, so they made us a snack bag of our favorite candy to eat on the way and wrote the most amazing cards to us to travel safe and enjoy Thanksgiving.  Since we all could not be together, we did the 2020 version of safely getting together.  We did a Zoom.  We had Mike and Mell in Lakeland, Eric and Katie quarantining at home in Queens, Caitlin, Greg, Jon, Lauren, Emma and Jake in Plainview, with cousins Glenn and Brittany, Sharon in Baldwin, and Pat and I in Naples. 

This will be an incredibly positive Thanksgiving despite the pandemic, due to the love our whole family has for each other.   My family is the greatest gift I have been given in my life.  Pat and I created a blended family, and our greatest blessing is that our children see each other as brothers and sisters, with never a “step” mentioned.  This holiday proved to me that it is not the two of us that makes it so amazing, but the 13 of us, and our loving feelings for each other. 

Really, under any circumstances, who could ask for anything more?

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