Thursday is Thanksgiving Day here in the US. We’ve all been taught the holiday was set aside by the Pilgrims to express gratitude for having survived their first year here in the New World.
The truth is, the holiday, while touted as a sacred time to share with family and friends, has been a tool for businesses to cash in on the money-making holiday season. Thanksgiving for many is days of cooking, followed by over-eating, then heading out for the mega-sales where they push the same stuff they did last year.
While we’re indulging in the madness, one-fourth of our population will be working. They include not only sales clerks, but law enforcement officers, hospital staff, correctional officers, airport staff, and child protective investigators.
And many of us will feel sad. We grieve for loved ones no longer with us. We hurt because we are estranged from ones we love, because the celebration never turns out how we think it should, because…. oh, there’s all sorts of things that come up.
But what we also have is a day to remind us that, while things may not be the way we would like, we are doing OK. You may only have part-time work, but you do have a job. You may buy your food with SNAP benefits, but you do have food.
I am grateful for many things in my life. For wonderful companion animals. For a job that pays the bills, and is something I’m pretty good at. For the support of my family and friends. And for wonderful readers like you who come here regularly to share your thoughts with me.
So I encourage each of you to remember that Thanksgiving is what we make it, then choose to set aside at least a few moments to remember all that you have to be grateful for.