At the age of fifty, Thanksgiving has an entirely different meaning to me that what it did my younger days. When I was younger, Thanksgiving meant a time for family and friends to gather and share memories of the year, enjoy a good meal together and sit and watch the proverbial holiday football game; and usually if you were from Texas it involved America’s favorite, the Dallas Cowboys. Usually the younger kids would go outside if the weather permitted and play a game of touch football and if not we would go to various rooms in Grandma’s house and play a variety of board games she kept around for those times when we would visit. As I grew older, it meant a time to give thanks that I had my health and was able to maintain a job and support those around me.
Now that I am semi-retired, Thanksgiving means a time for family and friends to gather and a time to share memories of the year that has passed and those memories of prior years. And I am thankful that those family and friends can be there to share those memories. For most of those, close to me are either at an age where their health is declining or they are alone due to the loss of their family and friends. I thank God that we are able to gather for some of us are incapable of traveling due to those health concerns or we don’t have the finances to travel.
I thank God for those friends I have that are truly there for me and will listen when I am troubled and need an ear to listen and can give comment that may help me resolve those problems. For it is by their wisdom; that I might move forward in a way, that benefits me and those around me.
I thank God for the younger generation of my family and friends that take the time to be with those of us who are older and can respect that wisdom that we as an older generation have even though some of us may be feeble in mind we know they care enough to listen as we ramble on about those days that were simpler in nature and had a lesser strain on our day to day lives.
I thank God for my health for it allows me to live another day and gather more memories of those around me and of all the things that happen as time rolls along. And if it weren’t for good health I wouldn’t be able to do those things I do to enjoy myself as I do.
Thanksgiving always means the beginning of fall and a time to look at the changing colors of nature. It symbolizes a period before the change when life ceases and new life begins. Look at the deer of the woods, in the spring the fawn are born and frolic through the woods knowing that they can’t fall prey to the hunter that will seek them during the fall.
I thank God that I have a roof over my head and friends and family that care what happens to me on a daily basis and sometimes I know I don’t realize just how much they do care and that they are there when I least expect them to be, yet there they are in those times when I really need them for moral support and sometimes emotional and financial needs. And it’s not that I don’t know how to appreciate them but how to show them how they are appreciated.
Finally, Thanksgiving means a time of giving and receiving the love of family and friends. As when I was little in Sunday School I was taught that we should love one another as we love ourselves and to treat each other with that respect. But we tend to forget those teachings the older we get due to social and political issues and as hatred and animosity are breed. It is during this time that I/we must may a change and look at things from the heart and not from the mind and revert back to those thinks we are taught when we are younger. That’s what Thanksgiving really means to me. And to those of you who are close whether in mind or spirit thank you for being there.