Monday, November 27, 2006

Was that a turkey I saw?

I was struck by my friend Charles' recent comments about the loss of his family's Thanksgiving traditions. My own Thanksgiving, this year, seemed to further mark that same steady progression away from the familiar in my own life.

Thanksgiving day had been a gathering of my wife and kids and my brothers wife and kids at my parents house since I was a kid. When my dad passed, we attempted to maintain this tradition, but we sometimes went out to eat, and sometimes we had my mom over to our house for the day. One year, we all went to my brothers' in-laws for the Turkey meal, which was a different but pleasant experience.

After my mom passed, the Thanksgiving tradition was broken. Last year we spent our first Thanksgiving in Texas and the sense of loss and seperation from home and the past became almost overwhelming. Some friends here were very kind and invited us to their home. The people were extremely nice and the food was incredible, but the experience could not quell the steadily mounting sense of holiday homesickness that seemed to permeate the entire season in 2005.

This year, I realized I was coming down with a cold on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving. I missed work on Wednesday and hoped to feel better for the Thanksgiving meal at Taura's cousin's home. Taura's cousin is the geographically closest family here in Texas and I was looking forward to spending the holiday with ACTUAL relatives.

Sadly, Thursday morning saw my cold becoming a full blown respiratory infection and I was unable to go anywhere. I sent Taura and the kids off to enjoy the day with family while I stayed home in bed. I was fairly sick most of the weekend, but got well enough to return to work today.

I realize all this reads like quite the pity party, but it is weighing on my mind with Christmas quickly approaching, that I miss home and friends...and family...

...and mom and dad.

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