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Why I’m Thankful

Posted by AB on November 25, 2009

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving–a time when we gather with family and friends to feast, as we give thanks for all of the things that we hold dear.  In some ways, it is unfortunate that we might wait until Thanksgiving to give thanks for those things that we should appreciate throughout the year.  And that is something that I would hope will change for me, personally.  I want to give thanks every day for all of the blessings that I have been given.

When I was younger, I never really understood the true meaning of this holiday.  I always focused on the part of Thanksgiving that involved turkey, ham, dressing, gravy, pie, and the rest of the fixings.  I always focused on the pick-up football games and the chance to see uncles, aunts, and cousins.  At school, we learned about the origins of Thanksgiving, including Pilgrims and Native Americans.  We celebrated by making turkeys from painted handprints.  As I have grown older and have seen some of the more difficult parts of life, the true meaning of Thanksgiving has become clear.

These are just some of the things for which I am thankful:

-I am thankful for my mother.  She has done so much for me throughout my life, and I would not be here without her.

-I am thankful for my little sister.  She has served our nation in Iraq for the past year, and she continues to grow into a person that would make any brother proud.  I used to think that it was my responsibility to protect her.  It is ironic, now, that she is a part of the force that protects all of us.  Also, her husband, my brother-in-law, who also serves in the military.

-I am thankful for the rest of my family and all of my friends.  Explaining why I am thankful for each of these people would turn this blog post into a novel.

-I am thankful for the US Military.  These men and women have volunteered to serve their nation, to place themselves into harms way, all in the name of America.

-I am thankful for all of the veterans who have served to protect this nation throughout its history.

-I am thankful for the families of those in the military.  Many times forgotten, they make sacrifices that cannot be measured by any scale. 

-I am thankful for our police officers, firefighters, and teachers.  They do some of the most important work that I can imagine.

-I am thankful for every breath that I am given.  There were times that I thought that my next breath could be my last.

-I am thankful for everyone who volunteers for or donates money to our charities.  You make a difference in the lives of those less fortunate and, at this time, nothing could be more important.

-I am thankful for this great nation in which we live.  I couldn’t imagine a greater force of good in the world than the collection of people and institutions of the United States of America.

-I am thankful for the state of North Carolina.  This is the greatest states in the union (in my opinion, anyway).

-I am thankful for Thanksgiving Day football.  Although I think that the games should rotate from year to year, rather than having Dallas and Detroit hosting, I still love it.  I am not thankful, however, that the third game is on the NFL network, which is not available for subscribers to Time Warner Cable.

-I am thankful for the food that I have to nourish me.  When I think of all of the people throughout the world and, unbelievably, in this country, I am heartbroken.  Whatever it is that makes me so fortunate, I am thankful.  

-I am thankful for our dogs, Max and Rocky.  They give all who know them such a great deal of joy and love.  Pets are not just pets, they are family.

-I am thankful for all of the opportunities that I have received, educationally and otherwise.

These are just some of the things for which I am thankful.  I surely left someone or some things out, but they are no less important for a complete, well-rounded life.  Let us give thanks each and every day, and do not wait for a holiday to be reminded.

Happy Thanksgiving!  Gobble-Gobble!

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