I'm not great at Thanksgiving.
Don't get me wrong. I can eat. I like to eat. Thanksgiving is an eating holiday. In that way, I am great at Thanksgiving.
But when it comes to feeling grateful, sometimes I count my many stressings instead of the blessings.
I have a great job and I work with some people who redefine what being talented and dedicated to a team really means. But there are times that things happen and I am left staring blankly trying to think of family friendly words to say and how to say them in my inside voice.
My kids also have a way of pushing my buttons that I can’t explain. Blake is a great kid. He is smart and I think most fathers would appreciate what a great job my wife has done raising him while I stared blankly searching for quiet appropriate words to say at work. He is also a teenager. I don’t think I have to explain any further and, since he gets veto power over anything I write about him, I doubt I could sneak anything by anyway.
Dawit is one of the sweetest and happiest kids you will ever meet. He is also as impulse driven as any child I have ever met. He never gets to step two. Dawit never tries to get in trouble. His problem lies in the fact that he never really tries not to get in trouble either. His thought process is far more binary. That can be more than a little frustrating.
I think you see what I mean. It is so easy to see and feel the stress at work and at home that it is even easier to miss out on how good you have it.
I watch people deal with children who are victims of accidents or diagnosed with terrible illnesses and I can’t imagine what I would do if that were me. The biggest problem I have is a little spray paint on the house. I’m sure many parents would trade places with me.
I have a friend who is waiting until Friday to remove her mother from life support systems after an extended illness. I am stressing over trying to make it back to my mother's house before the kickoff in the Cowboys' game and in time for my second Thanksgiving feast in the same day.
It feels short-sighted to feel the stress and not take a little time to count the blessings. Thanksgiving is a great time to reflect on those things and spend less time worrying about the minor inconveniences that come along with them.