More Than a Meal

Antonia at Thanksgiving dinner: “Pass that big bowl of gratitude, will you? And, after that, I’ll take the main course of friends and family stuffed with happiness and that delicious spiritual sauce to put on top.”

Sounds silly, for sure, but it’s honestly what I think is the meaning of the Thanksgiving holiday for me. Over the years you’ve heard me lament that I dislike all the traditional T-day foods: stuffing, yams, jello salads, turkey and gravy, mashed potatoes and pumpkin pie with whipped cream.

If it’s not about the food, then what is the advantage of formally celebrating this century’s old holiday? (Sounds like something I might jokingly say.)

Fellowship is what it’s about for me. It’s a day where I lift the appreciation of all the bounty in my life, including family and friends, a little higher on my daily pedestal of homage. This year for me has been a wonderful one – not without its trials and bumpiness, but still full and rewarding and educational.

Others have not been so lucky this year. Living near the location of record-breaking horrific fires that affected the lives of thousands, I’ve tried to translate my gratitude into acts of kindness for those families and animals who have suffered. By doing so, I’m creating the joy of this holiday within my heart and soul. I shouldn’t be surprised: doing for others always brings about a boundless joy within me.

I hope you will look around within your own community to see where you can give to others as a greater reason to be thankful. I guarantee you’ll experience a more intense joy than any meal can make you feel.

 “I am grateful for what I am and have.
My thanksgiving is perpetual.”
Henry David Thoreau
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