HAPPY TURKEY DAY! Even if it is not about the turkey!
Dear Mom and Dad,
It is Thanksgiving today, and I am leaving this little note for you to see how I looked when I woke up this morning….
I will tell you that I had a smile on my face, and I was playing peek a boo with poppy at that crack of dawn, which is just about when he and Nana got into bed getting ready for the day of THANKS!
Nana had been worried about making side dishes for Thanksgiving dinner. She had a few doctor appointments, and knew that the day of traveling to share Thanksgiving with Great Grandparents would be busy and fun. She worried that the food she brought would not be enough or not up to par. She worried that she was making recipies that were not familiar, or that she would dissapoint. Worried about little things…. like was the food prepared well enough, or will it be good?
It is funny though…. Nana thought, she could not be with her mom… just like I am not with you. It matters not how old you are, and in some ways, I think I may have it the easiest of all being so young. For it is you and dad, and older people like Nana who can tend to be sad when not with loved ones at the holidays. So I did my best to brighten everyone’s day.
Great Grandpa Ray shared his daywith us… we went there early in the day, and then the campers and I all raced to share time with Great Grandpa Alan and Great Grandma Sharyn, Great Uncle Dave and Great Aunt Kris. We had an opportunity to see all kinds of other family, but leaving Great Grandpa Ray was not easy. We all wish there was more time in the day. Seeing Great Grandpa and Great Grandma, andespecially Great Great Great Aunt Shirley… (YEP, I said, GREAT GREAT GREAT Aunt Shirley) at Uncle David’s was really nice too. Yet there is always that reminder, of those who cannot be together. Great Great Aunt Ida, and Cuz Nanc had to miss out on dinner sadly, but we all had them on our minds. Great Aunt Michelle, or Great Aunt Nori and the cousins… all unable to sit at the table but with us just the same… Great Grandma Sally and Great Grumpy obviously were not able to be with us from Seattle…but were weighing heavy on Nana’s mind. Great Grandma Sally missing her son, who she cannot see, or Great Great Great Aunt Shirley missing her son each in their own way. It occured to Nana, that these little details she worried about trying to get to this day, are not quite as important as understanding the value of the times we do get with each other, and making the most of them. It is about letting those we cannot see, know that we care and they are missed or that we are right there with them.
I ate my first bite of turkey today, and some mashed potatoes. I enjoyed them both. Nana fed me, and was thinking… how Great Grandma Sally once fed her son. Poppy had called earlier to wish her a Happy Thanksgiving… and Nana’s brother, or Great Grandma Sally’s son is named “Rob” too. So when Grumpy said “Rob’s on the phone” Great Grandma Sally’s heart must have fluttered a bit, and Poppy felt bad for making her feel any pain, or sadness. Being half full in everything he does, Poppy still made her laugh and smile. That is just Poppy…
We may be miles apart, and we may not have been able to spend my first Thanksgiving eating turkey together. But at the end of the day, Nana says, what really mattered was not if there was enough food, or if she had prepared it properly, what mattered is that she loves her family and friends and had an opportunity to try to prepare their favorite things, or an opportunity to bring a smile to a face… we had a chance, even though Great Aunt Ida and cousin Nanc weren’t able to be with us, to let them know they were missed.
To all the men and women, who could not be with their children, who could not be with thier spouses, or their parents this Thanksgiving because they are in the land of sand, I just want to say, that today I learned, it really not about the turkey, it is not about what we cannot do… but instead about appreciating who we are, and the life we have been given. (Although my friend Terrence Turkey did make the day nice!) It is about gratitude. All of us at camp, say… we are thankful to you for different things… (mainly they are THANKFUL FOR HAVING HAD TIME WITH ME). We all know that you BOTH are here with us – even if not physically. We also know that you are always right here… in our hearts and in our minds. Thank you… Mom and Dad, for bringing me to Camp Nana, where I am safe, and Iam happy. I know you are already here… with me, and sharing in my life the only way we can right now… and some day soon, we will do so many wonderful things together. I am lucky, and I am grateful to be your Little Miss Adorable, your pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, your daughter,
P.S. Happy Birthday Aunt Kris, thanks for a wonderful dinner… but we didn’t sing my favorite song to you…. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!
I know Great Grandma Sally and Grumpy were missing their kids, and Great Grandma Sharyn hers too… most of all I know mom and dad are missing me… but then I remember that Nana says the love someone has shown and given, stays with you where ever you go, and it carries you back to where you need to be, no matter how long or hard the road is… you and daddy are not alone, the love of your parents, family and friends IS THERE WITH YOU… Nana told me….. you know if Nana says it she means it! (Nana had the video of you and daddy up today, but then realized it had my whole name on it, and people in it that she didnt ask permission of – (like a five star general in a photo with Dad), so she took it off today’s love letter. But if you close your eyes you can see it in your head, and remember we will be together very very soon.