ABCs of Thanksgiving – F is for Family

“In every conceivable manner, the family is link to our past, bridge to our future.”

Alex Haley

Family means different things to different people.

No family is perfect, not even on television.

Family is often messy.

But at the end of the day, or the week, or your life, family is often all that you have.

I grew up in a close knit family.

Both of my parents were close to their siblings. My cousins often felt more like siblings.

That became even more true when my Mom married my Uncle who became my Stepdad. No, it’s not a Southern thing…well it is, but that requires another post. And a flow chart.

I keep in touch with my brother and my cousin/siblings. My wife does the same with her siblings.

But it’s not like it used to be.

Part of that is distance.

Instead our family is much smaller. Both our adult boys are living at home.

So our family is the four of us plus two very large (and currently expensive) dogs and a large, and always obnoxious cat.

My wife wants the huge family crowded around the Thanksgiving table. We both knew that growing up. But we don’t have it now.

I’m not sure we’ll have it again.

Does that make us not a normal family? No. It does not.

Honestly, I don’t think there is such a thing as a normal family.

Sure you get the perfect pictures of everyone in white and denim on the beach. You get the annual Christmas letter of accomplishments.

But you don’t see the challenges and pain that got to those pictures or that letter.

We all have them.

I love my family. Both our nuclear family and extended family.

I also have friends that I would consider family.

I’m thankful for all of them.

Perfect? Hardly.

Exceptional? Sometimes.

Here? Yeah, most of the time, and that’s what counts.

So, I’m sorry this isn’t a Hallmark movie post here and talk about how the family prodigal retunrs to save the family business and marry their high school sweetheart.

I mean, I’m not even sure I could write that.

Whatever family is to you, I hope it’s meaningful this holiday season.

Photo by Claudio Schwarz on Unsplash


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