In a brazen affront to my Canadian heritage, I think I'm going to go with this whole Thanksgiving-in-November thing. Now, now. I know...it's unnatural. Obscene, even. In fact it throws my whole compass of right and wrong, good and evil, etc etc, out of whack. I can only plead peer pressure as a defense. I mean...defence! Sorry!!
I do find that having Thanksgiving closer to Christmas can help lend a bit of much-needed gravitas to the entire holiday season. And truly, I'm the last person to generally feel sentimental over occasions that are, to me at least (as the child of immigrants), sort of "borrowed" holidays. Like that trendoid shirt you picked up years ago that never quite fits or looks right no matter how much you try to "make it work."
For the first time ever, though, I feel like I actually understand the sheer enormity (for lack of a better word) of my incredible good fortune. It was like being jolted into another dimension, as twee as that sounds. Like many others in my profession, I'm inclined to be sort of moody and contemplative and deeply enmired in my inflated sense of self-importance (even though I do often try to confront myself with what a tiny, insignificant being I really am - truly!). There aren't too many moments of utter clarity of the sort I've recently had, starting with a little meme I read on an online forum I frequent called something like "2008: good or bad?" I have to say that I was honestly affected by all the stories...everything from deaths, layoffs, infertility, divorce. Sometimes multiples of these events happening to the same people. And I realized right there that I have never had so many bad things happen to me that I could characterize the whole year as "bad."
Don't get me wrong...I feel like I've experienced hardship in life, including poverty and stress and loneliness. But at this time, most of that is a distant memory. Even though I've never really stopped to think on it seriously before, my life right now is so full and so charmed. I won't even try to do it justice by trying to enumerate all of my big and little blessings. Just suffice to say that I feel more than a little shame for coveting as much as I do. We have our jobs (mine that allows me to take months off with full pay to be with my Piglet), our friends, our health...and perhaps most importantly, we have the amazing good fortune to live safe and secure. The news over the last few days has been so sickening that I could barely open the news sites to see the images of the utter carnage in India. There was also an editorial in the NY Times today describing acid attacks on women in Bangladesh and Afghanistan who dare to divorce their husbands, or go to school, or act in other uppity ways. As a woman of East Indian descent, now with a small daughter, these stories are especially chilling...there but for the grace of God. I now realize how I've been building away at my life with the happy obliviousness of someone who has never had to worry much for her safety or her savings or her daughter's ability to become anything she wants.
I know I said I wasn't enumerating, but have to throw in that I'm incredibly thankful for a motivated, kind, involved husband whose valiant efforts at bouncing the baby have allowed this blog post to happen...love you baby! And thanks.