Still thankful after all these months

cooked chicken on white plate

Yesterday was Thanksgiving 2020. As I empty the dishwasher that’s still filled with serving ware from our family’s Thanksgiving dinner, I reflect on this very different holiday and how we’re adjusting to these socially distanced holidays.

Our Thanksgiving meal wasn’t very different than in previous years. Turkey, ham, dressing, macaroni and cheese, roasted potatoes, greens, rolls. And of course, cranberry sauce. Now if I’m being honest, this year’s greens were from a can (hey, don’t judge me), but it’s 2020 and we’ve all been through a lot.

I spent most of the day cooking, managing two ovens to ensure all the food hit the table at the same time. Then our small group of 5 dug in for comfort food and conversation. 

Even as we laughed and talked and passed the gravy, there was a bit of a cloud hanging over our table. A common and unspoken acknowledgement that our Thanksgiving meal together was an oasis of normalcy in a desert of 2020 insanity. We’re so used to bad news on top of crazy news, that the simple act of a shared meal with those we love most seemed almost out of place.

If you have teenagers you know that shortly after dinner they disappeared, returning to their bedrooms and their devices. As they reconnected with friends who live elsewhere, my husband and I enjoyed warm cocktails in front of the fireplace. Another Thanksgiving tradition we’ve come to love over the years. Instead of planning our Black Friday shopping and brainstorming gifts for the 20+ family members who would join us for our traditional Christmas dinner (canceled), we discussed the impact 2020 has had on our family and our community.

A lot has changed. Our holidays are celebrated differently. No more hearty hugs for friends and family. Large gatherings have been replaced with video visits. And the world seems a bit smaller because we’re not as free in it as we used to be.

But there have been a few silver linings. We’re more aware of the things that matter. We’re grateful for our continued good health. We appreciate the time we spend with family—either in person or via video. And many of us have reorganized our competing responsibilities, prioritizing family and experiences over work and material belongings. We’re cautious about the present but hopeful for the future.

So although yesterday’s holiday was a bit different, and 2020 has been a #@%#!, we still have reasons to be very thankful this Thanksgiving. And beyond. 

From our Urban Upscale family to yours, we hope your Thanksgiving was the beginning of a healthy, happy and hopeful holiday season. 

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