Seniors: New Lessons in Thanksgiving

Nov 30th, 2009 | By Dr Jerry D Elrod | Category: Senior Moments Blog

Traditions, for the most part, are good things.  But, as one grows older and life cycles introduce major change to our existence, it becomes necessary to reevaluate how to act out our traditions.  This year we played out a new drama on Thanksgiving day and weekend.  Because family changes and agendas and customs undergo change, it appeared possible to create a new scenario for our Thanksgiving Day.  This meant having to be sure that everyone else in the family would be in an okay place for themselves.  It also meant that we had to do some creative thinking about how we would continue to have meaning for our holiday. 

Our holiday included reserving a small cottage  in northeastern Arizona, in a place that is billed as “the road to nowhere.”  It is in Greer, Arizona.  We arrived late on Wednesday and resided there until Sunday morning.  We enjoyed the comfort and pleasure of winter like weather in a cabin with a fireplace, books to read, games to play, naps to be undisturbed, while accompanied by our two pets.  It was perfect.  Snow even fell overnight on Saturday. 

Winter walks with our dogs, dining out at one of several available eateries, watching a football game and a movie were all part of our packed and exhausting agenda.  It was a time that was blissfully, and perhaps selfishly, all ours. It was an occasion when we invested ourselves in one another, a rare gift and a renewal that every couple needs and deserves now and then.  Our Thanksgiving meal was enjoyed in the local lodge where a full buffet with all the trimmings allowed us to eat well, while observing children and parents at play around 2 frozen ponds just beyond the window.

Often, we would gaze at one another across the table or the room, declaring, sometime without words, how grateful we were, how fortunate our lives had become, how full and pleasant life can be, wherever spent, however engaged, marked by old or new celebrations.  It was our way of celebrating our 35th Thanksgiving together in 2009.  It lacked some dimensions, while taking on others.  It taught us that whether near to all one’s family or far, the depth of meaning Thanksgiving offers can be celebrated, enjoyed and enriching. 

Prayerfully, hopefully your holiday, however framed, served to bring you an occasion of thanksgiving and offered new lessons for celebrating it.

(Incidentally, our computers were down until midafternoon Monday, thus preventing our being with you.  Our apologies).



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