Happy Thanksgiving for all the Canadians in the crowd. Whoop!! Whoop!!
I was not as jazzed up about it this morning and was going to stay in the foul mood I was in until I had my fill of turkey, and dang it! There was no turkey for me this Thanksgiving. BOO HOO!
It all started with best intentions. First, we had invited a few people for a Thanksgiving Day feast set to go at 4pm (Sunday). One guy from Africa, whose family is still in the far away land, said “yes”. We were thrilled. We just could not find anyone else, not even strangers (we were bribing with cookies), to commit to join us for the festive meal. We were set to go with only one man to celebrate the day of thankfulness. We were thankful just to have a reason to cook up a turkey, make some pie and eat until we were stuffed.
Then the day of reckoning came. Having CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) and Fibromyalgia has only recently made my reliability a very dangerous thing to place any bets on. On Friday, I was barely functioning. I got a few things done, but by Saturday my body had crashed. I could not get out of bed and I couldn’t believe it! I told my limbs what I thought of their betrayal and it didn’t seem like they were hearing me. I tried almost everything. Still, I couldn’t guarantee that I would be up for prepping a meal and our house and then having a meal ready by Sunday. We thought the most wise thing to do was to call it off and cancel with our one guest. I LOVE hospitality and having people over. It’s one of those things that I’ve missed most about having my CFS/Fibro kick my butt this year. Even though I have tried to kick its butt by running a 5 km recently, apparently it hasn’t up and left my system. Bummer!
I woke up this morning with a better feeling body but a stinky attitude. I tried to hide it the best I could and spent time with my family before church going over what we were all thankful for. It was a fantastic way to get most of my mind off of my troubles. One of my children said “I am thankful mommy does all the stuff and cleaning and cooking and that she is here.” Aw! It wasn’t elaborate but it was sweet.
We went to church where the Reverend reminded us to put our minds on things above from Phil. 4:8 And now, dear brothers and sisters, one last thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” He challenged us that if we keep our minds on things that are negative and dishonorable or even dishonest, then we will live lives that show that. Instead, fixing our minds on things that are all the above will make us see life from a different perspective and make it good. I was needing that particular spiritual kick in the pants. I had been stuck in pity thinking about how much I missed my extended family and how I really wanted to have different plans for Thanksgiving.
I felt the need to cook up a plan of my own. I knew that we didn’t have much money left for the month, but I thought I’d ask anyways….”Could we go for Chinese food for lunch?” I asked the Reverend. He looked thrilled by the idea and immediately said yes. Now, not everyone can say they spent their Thanksgiving meal at a gas station! We enjoyed our kids and had some fun with them while waiting and eating. The food came, steaming hot and loads of it. We chowed down and promised to come back later for ice-cream. We were stuffed, like a turkey!
The Reverend got up to pay the bill and found out that someone had payed for our meal! Someone we knew only in passing had paid for the bill for a family of SIX! We were BLESSED! and so very thankful! It’s not everyday you are carrying on with your family only to have it observed by someone else (well, it is a small town) and then have them show such kindness. They didn’t even know the state of our bank account. Thank-you sort-of-stranger (we know his son) and thank-you to God!
We went home for a sauna and movie afternoon. Also, not a traditional way to spend this holiday, but hey! Who’s making the rules anyways? We sweated and we laughed over the antics and misadventures of Porky Pig and generally had a relaxed time. Three kids rotated in and out of the sauna like chicken on a rotisserie but I stayed and sweat out whatever was ailing me. Mostly aching bones, ’cause I’m getting old like that.
I got a call from a friend of mine who was the gas station waitress’ cousin. I had left my purse at the gas station. Thankfulness chipped away at my heart as I realized that the waitress had cared enough to call her cousin to get the message to me. After drying off from the sauna, we made an early trip back for ice-cream and my purse. The kids were ecstatic!
We came back home to enjoy our ice-cream when a shriek was heard. The shriek of an 11 year-old child a thing to behold. Children that age don’t make those sounds all the time anymore (usually) so we thought the worst. Through gasping and crying, we managed to figure out that he had broken his brace when he was eating the ice-cream cone. He was seriously freaked out that he would not win his Xbox????? The orthodontist has a draw for those kids who keep their teeth clean. Irony? I think so. Besides the fact that the really bent wire was making him nervous the Xbox was the biggest concern. Sigh! We called the ortho ER number to see what we could do. I have to admit I thought that he had gotten into the Thanksgiving wine when he said to clip the wire with nail clippers. I’m fairly certain he doesn’t know we have four children because even with a thorough job at sterilizing them, the cleanliness of those clippers could be questioned. I’ve seen my kids’ nails up close and personal.
A few spazzy moments later and the wire was successfully clipped. My son kept wailing “Why are you taking so long, just snip it…why are you taking so long.?” Apparently, I am not very good at using those kind of tools in a moving child’s mouth.
After having delicious pie with people who were new to our community we went home to attempt peeling children off of their sugar highs. My son started running around with a possible Halloween costume on which included underwear on his head with his eyes peering out the leg holes. He has a history of being difficult to settle so I said “I’ll stick this pair of underwear on my head if you will go to bed… as long as they’re clean.” He nodded. I stuck the undies on my head (as any good superhero would do) and then saw my son slaying himself with laughter. “I tricked you Mom. They weren’t clean. You just put a dirty pair of undies on your head. ha ha ha ha ha hahahahahahahaha…” I just totally set myself up for that one.
So many reasons to be thankful today. Even the dirty undies. It made me laugh and it will keep that child in stitches for weeks as he tells all his little friends.