It’s dubiously ironic that MotherMe’s very first blog post was about turkey. I just got my Thanksgiving turkey today. Actually, I got three of them; one to roast this week, and two to freeze for later. We’ll probably have one for Christmas and the other sometime in the New Year. Good thing it’s cold outside. I have some time to rearrange things in the freezer to make room for 34 1/2 pounds of spare turkey.
This is our fourth year buying free range turkey, incidentally. It’s also the fourth year that we’re on our own here for Thanksgiving dinner. Everyone else has either moved away or is busy with other folks, so it’s just me and DH and the girls who sit down for the big meal. Some of my inlaws stop by later Thanksgiving evening to visit, so we do get to spend part of the day with family. But I can’t help but feel a little bit left out. Growing up, Thanksgiving was a huge, hectic, all-day affair, celebrated with cousins and grandparents and aunts and uncles and who knows who. There were lots of women in the kitchen and lots of kids running around. I remember helping Gram set the ping-pong table up for 20 or more people to eat. My grandma’s teeny tiny house was bursting with warm bodies and good smells and noise and happiness and hustle-bustle. My house, now, is just…. me. I’m the only one in the kitchen, and DH and the girls are the only ones eating. It’s pretty darn lonely, to be honest.
I don’t mean to be all down in the dumps about Thanksgiving. I’m so lucky in so many ways, and we do have an awful, awful lot to be thankful for. But I can’t help but feel a little bit let down again this year. It’s so weird to have Thanksgiving as a quiet dinner with DH and the kids after the giant holiday affairs of my youth. And I’m especially sad that my own kids don’t have all the hooplah that we did, with rarely-seen cousins to play with and family all around. I’m finding it harder and harder to muster enough energy to even mash the potatoes.
Sometimes, it’s really hard to be grateful for what you have when all you can think about is what you’re missing.