This was a Rough Year, but We Still Have Things to be Thankful For
As much as we hate stating the obvious, 2020 was an incredibly challenging year for everyone. Looking back on this pandemic, it’s probably safe to say the best thing about this past year is that it’s almost over. But that sour note doesn’t mean we aren’t allowed to have a truly happy Thanksgiving.
Many of us had to scrub our holiday travel plans this year. We’re scrambling to cobble everyone together for last minute video conference calls, or even just calling our families on the phone. Thanksgiving 2020 is going to be more difficult for more people than any Thanksgiving prior.
It might feel like we don’t have much to feel thankful for in 2020. But it’s always easier to be critical than positive. We all need to take a moment to count our blessings and think about what we do have, rather than dwelling negatively on what we don’t.
A Very Different Thanksgiving
Thanksgiving and Christmas are huge in my family. Any other year, my family’s house in Binghamton, New York gets overloaded with people. We’re talking multiple birds here. Last year I made the trip home from Buffalo, but this year I’ll be seeing them over Zoom. It’s a holiday road trip I was really hoping to make this year, but the pandemic had other plans.
It of course won’t be all bad. I’m thankful to get to spend time with my wife and kids, who also feel let down we couldn’t drive down. And seeing everyone over the Internet is a lot better than not getting to see them at all.
We’re still trying to figure out the logistics of our huge post-meal Monopoly game, a tradition dating back to before I was born. In my family, that Monopoly game is arguably more important than the food. And it’s one of those family traditions where “there’s always next year” just isn’t going to cut it.
Still, at least I’ll be surrounded with people I love, and I can see the rest of my family on a video call. There are people who aren’t as lucky, and I’m thankful to have this quality time, however remote or seemingly limited.
And that’s really what Thanksgiving is all about. It’s not about turkey or cranberry sauce, or arguing with your uncle about politics, or threatening the lives of your siblings because they landed on Free Parking, which in our house is like winning the lottery. It’s about being thankful for what you have, and enjoying time with those you love. And in a year like 2020, all of that means so much more than it ever did before.
We Can Still Have a Happy Thanksgiving, One and All
If we were traveling home this year, our table would have two empty seats it never had before. My mom and her two closest friends had COVID earlier this Fall. My mom recovered from it, but her friends weren’t so lucky. And mine is just one of the countless families who endured tragedy at the hands of this virus.
We’re sad Joyce and Robert won’t be with us this year. But it does put things into perspective, and makes you grateful for the time we do get with the people who are still here. If that doesn’t qualify as something to be truly thankful for, I’m not sure what does.
Try to contact your loved ones. If you’re braving the virus and traveling, drive safe and wear your mask. This holiday season might be different. It’s going to be challenging. But we can still cull some joy from everything, regardless of what’s happening in the world around us.
Speaking for all of us here at Tent and Table, we’d like to wish you a very safe and happy Thanksgiving this year. We hope you’re able to get in touch with those you can’t see in person, and that you get some great food in the process.