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Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksmoving Day

I've never been much of a morning person. Typically I awake with a sense of urgency mixed with dread. The exceptions are holidays.

Maybe it's because growing up my mother's two favorite methods for rousting her four sleeping children were: walking through the house clanging pots together and getting a big glass of cold water and threatening to dump it over your head. It only took once for that to become an extremely effective method at getting me up for the day.

Or maybe it's because I've spent most of my adult life waking up late to hurry to a job I don't like.

Whatever the reason, I hate mornings, that is, unless I've got a good reason to allow myself to stay in bed.

This morning I awoke at 8 a.m., our typical waking time.

Since it is Thanksgiving, the sense of dread and urgency isn't there. Plus, I put clean sheets on my bed yesterday along with a big fluffy pillow that I've been using in my living room, so my bed is even more comfortable than usual.

I decided to let Annika sleep, which means I can't get up. She will wake up soon as I roll out of bed most of the time. She stays pressed up against me most nights and then nurses off and on starting around daybreak.

So I read my e-mail on my iPod touch. I played a game for a while. Then I began thinking about holidays.

I generally hate holidays. They are overblown, overcommercialized, and anti-climactic. It seems like they never reflect the original intent. It also means that I have to spend time with my entire family all at once. (Need I say more?)

When I think about the first supposed Thanksgiving -- which from my vague memory of elementary learning was a story about Native Americans sharing food with the settlers -- I figure it was probably less idyllic than was taught.

Instead of the two groups coming together for a huge meal complete with a dripping turkey, corn on the cob, mashed potatos and warm steamy pies, I imagine some sweaty brown-skinned men and women crouching on their haunches while peering curiously at some half dead hungry white folks who are cursing each other for dragging them to this god forsaken land.

I imagine the brown folks handing the white folks some tough, dry meat and maybe
some roasted corn, (things that kept well and travelled easily in leather bags) to the starved settlers and whispering in wonderment as they gobbled down sustenance.

Then I think about the huge heart attack inducing meals that we feed ourselves every year and then settle in front of the TV with alcohol and call it a day.

I guess it's all about context.

Most days, average Americans aren't literally starving to death. So on days when we are thankful, we stuff our faces. Hey, nothing wrong with that. I really do enjoy a hearty meal.

My point is that what I'm really thankful for today is a cozy bed, a cuddly daughter and the big meal that I will share later on with my cranky dysfunctional family.

As I near the end of this post I realize that my headline, while catchy, shows that I did not stay on topic.

Yeah, we're also starting the move today. So, we'll spend what's left of the morning loading and unloading stuff. By the end of the weekend, I'll be completely vaulted into single motherdom.

Gobble. Gobble. Gobble.

I'm also thankful for a really strong man to move my stuff.

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