Monday, November 23, 2015

With a grateful prayer and a thankful heart

I guess the title of this post is somewhat ironic, since I'm going to be writing about how hard it is for me to be thankful this time of year.  This year, in particular, it's rough.  But it seems like the holidays bring a heaping dose of bullshit pretty much every single year.  There's always turmoil somewhere, whether it's in my family or my husband's family, but it's always somewhere.  There's always a blow up with someone.  Some war or feud going on.  Something that makes you wish that you lived on the side of a mountain and could ignore everyone.  My husband's uncle actually did that, incidentally, and sometimes I wonder if there was a wisdom in that decision that I had yet to consider.

The sad thing about this is that I love the holidays.  Truly.  I love the music and the decorations and the opportunity to see people you don't see often.  I love the generosity that comes out of people.  I like gift shopping.  I like going to the mall with crowds of people and finding gifts.  I like all of those things that other people hate.  And somehow, despite all of the turmoil that goes on just outside my door or on the other end of my phone, I manage to love the holiday more and more every year.  I dread the onslaught of BS that comes with it, but I love this season.

That said, I have a hard time being thankful at Thanksgiving.  Most of the time I just look at the life I lead and think "Other people don't deal with these things...." and it makes me feel frustrated.  It makes me feel like everything crazy happens to me because I somehow deserve it.  Or it's my fault.  Intellectually you can know it isn't your fault, but it's hard to keep that feeling from gnawing at you every time something ridiculous happens.  Where my friends will be going to lovely holiday dinners with their families and everyone will chat and get along and probably watch some tv together, I'll be bounced from house to house, trying to manage the rounds and trying to minimize damage as groups of people collide with the force of an A-Bomb in my life.  Love is hard sometimes, and lately I find myself having a hard time finding a whole lot of it to spare for some people.

The nice thing is that when I close my door and don't answer my phone, I have this lovely nuclear family that is all happy and healthy and safe this season.  I have traditions that kick off this Friday and carry through the weekend.  I have love and joy that radiates through my house during this time of year.  I have a beautiful little girl to start sharing these traditions with, and the most beautiful thing about all of this is that while I stand at the front line of the nonsense, I can shield her.  Her life will not look like mine.  Her world will not look like my world.  She will grow up with only a vague awareness of what goes on in the world I grew up in.  She will know love, and happiness.  She will know stability and understanding.  She will grow up in a life that sometimes I wish I had gotten myself, but that I'm lucky enough to provide for her.

So I guess that's enough to leave me with a grateful prayer and a thankful heart.

Well....if I prayed.  But the heart part is accurate.


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