Wednesday, November 27, 2019

Family Time -- the ultimate Thanksgiving gift

           After years of blogging there came a point when I finally moved past the need to fill these largely unread pages with new material on a regular basis. It seemed I had moved beyond that ‘pen to paper’ itch.
Still, every so often I sense the urge to open my rusty mind-gates long enough to free pent-up thoughts that want to escape. This feels like one of those times.
It strikes me as fitting that the annual Thanksgiving season marks the time of year when Roma and I are once again the same age. This year the number is 82, which I accept as a well-earned benchmark, meaning we’ve been together for 63 years, which is surely reason to give thanks. Chances are it also wins her a medal.
At moments like this I suppose it is natural to count our blessings. That seems especially true after the weekend last month when our clan gathered at the beach for several days to celebrate Roma’s birthday. It was a special, unstructured family time……four generations of us visiting, playing games, laughing together, and generally enjoying ourselves in the company of that special lady, a prime molder of the persons we  have  all become.
Truth to tell, the two of us have moved beyond the time when travel ……whether extended international adventures or quiet weekends at the beach……is a favored pursuit. For a one-time travel junkie like me that is quite a change. 
What has not changed, however, are the warm and comfortable possibilities of family time. Neither a long drive nor a few nights in an unfamiliar bed is too great a price to pay for that
Of course those family gatherings may sometimes include awkward moments……when Grandma’s first inclination is to do what she has always done……organize, prepare, and do most everything that has to be done. Fortunately,  our very adult offspring, and their adult children, were quite willing to step up and carry the load……though it wasn’t always easy to convince Grandma that she had earned a break?
As viewed from the adjoining living room (except for loading the dishwasher and carving the turkey I am not a ‘kitchen guy.’) the results were invariably an amiable compromise. With everyone lending a hand we had a great time……walks on the beach for the energetic ones, eating well, enjoying a few ballgames, and playing our share of pinochle.
Long story short……such a matriarchal celebration was cause for thanksgiving  It was not the time to be dwelling on the sometimes dubious reality of growing another year older. Instead, the Queen and I sat back and basked in the pleasant warmth of caring company and family fun……thankful for how the years have blessed us.   
And why not? There will be time enough tomorrow to deal with those sometimes distressing ‘aging’ situations we cannot avoid even the best of times.