On taking stock of life….

Thanksgiving, much like the dreaded Valentines Day, is a day when the retail industry seems to prey on our overly-consumerist brains. We spend tons of cash on food, to say the very least, and Black Friday…well, let’s not even go there.

People tend to rag on Valentines Day quite a bit for being a consumer driven man-made holiday designed to guilt us into buying expensive chocolates, flowers, and jewelry to prove to that we love someone. I, for one, used to be adamantly opposed to Valentines Day. Unfortunately, I did not have a good reason. I just was. But then, after finding someone who could make me like Valentines Day for all the traditional hullabaloo (yes, I get flowers every year), I began to think differently about the day.

We all lead very busy lives. None of us seem to have enough time in the day to manage all the things we need to do and people we need to see. I have three calendars for three different parts of my life and I still can’t seem to keep everything straight (though I do manage to keep a good portion of it under control). So isn’t it kind of nice to have that automatic reminder every year on February 14th to tell the people in our lives that we love them?

Sure, sure. We should tell people we love them every day. But honestly, the only person who gets a daily “I love you” from me is my husband. That leaves a substantial portion of the people in my life to whom I definitely do not say that to often enough. While Valentines Day has taken a romantic tone, there’s no reason that we shouldn’t be reminded to say “I love you” to everyone that day.

The same is true of Thanksgiving. A holiday that’s riddled with tradition, at least in my family, is also a good excuse to take stock of the things for which we are thankful. I was challenged by a friend to try to find something to be thankful for each day this month. Some days were easier than others, that’s for certain. But I have a hard time believing that any of us could go a single day without finding something to be thankful for. Even on the hardest, darkest days of this year, there has been a glimmer of thankfulness (even if it was hard to find and I really had to hunt it down).

We should be thankful for many things every single day. Thanksgiving is just a good reminder of that…even if you spend the entire day drugged up on tryptophan, watching football (which is what I usually end up doing).

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