talking turkey

This is what I'd like to think my Thanksgiving dinners will look like...

This is what I’d like to think my Thanksgiving dinners will look like…

I have a bit of a confession to make:  I haven’t really enjoyed Thanksgiving for a long, long time. But I think that’s about to change.  In fact, I’m sure of it.  But  I’ll get to that…

For the 8 years that I lived down South, Jabba and I never made it back home for Thanksgiving.  We were both teaching and Thanksgiving Break in academia is basically a 5 day weekend.  Getting a flight for the busiest travel holiday of the year is a very expensive venture – especially when adding in The Kid and said 5 day weekend.  Traveling by car on aforementioned 5 day weekend with said Kid is almost too time consuming.  At the end of it all, Thanksgiving is essentially about one dinner with the family.

To make a long story short, we had agreed that traveling for Thanksgiving was a waste of time and money.  That, and I think we were both okay with the idea of having our own family Thanksgiving dinner.  After all, you could eat turkey and watch the Detroit Lions lose in spectacular fashion on national TV anywhere.  Besides, we could always see the families at Christmas.  We would always come up for Christmas – my mother wouldn’t take no for an answer to that.  At least, not until I had to work on Christmas, but I digress.

Last year was kind of an odd turkey day for me.  Sure, I was with the family, but I missed The Kid – as he was with Jabba.  I lived, of course. alcohol helped.  Besides, it’s still just one dinner on one day. It really wasn’t the end of the world – or even a bad day for that matter.  But this year is already different.

...but they'll probably look more like this.

…but they’ll probably look more like this.

Thanksgiving  is, at least in theory, a day to reflect upon all the things that we are thankful for.  It is a day for family, friends and feasting.  For the first time in a long time, I truly feel  like I have a lot to be thankful for this year.

UPDATE: 11/29/13 3:19 P.M.

The auteur, 1B and I made the trip into Leroy’s house for
Thanksgiving dinner.  It was, of course, my first Thanksgiving with The Auteur and the first time 1B got to meet my mom, LeRoy, his wife, kids and in-laws.  Things went much better than I expected. Not that I expected anything bad to happen; I just assumed that there would be some first-time-you-meet-people awkwardness.  I was a bit anxious because I wanted everyone to hit it off, which they all seemed to do just fine.

Late last night/this morning The Auteur told me what a good time she and 1B had at my brother’s.  She even said that 1B told her it was “the best Thanksgiving ever”.  Maybe that was 1B just being a kid and speaking in hyperbole but it was definitely one for the ages.  It was very casual, very laid-back.  Very real.  Very sincere.  There were no bombshell announcements or shocking revelations like you see in movies.  There was no pressure nor any underlying subtext. It was family enjoying each others company and a great meal together.

I have so much to be thankful for; sometimes I think far more than I deserve.  I have The Auteur – a truly remarkable woman who loves both me and my son – flaws and all – unconditionally.  I have a family for whom I would lay in traffic – and I know would do the same for me.  I have my health and my job – albeit a crappy paying one.

Now I have to stare down a proverbial 400 lb. gorilla called Christmas…

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