Thanksgiving plays an important role in my book, The Space Between: A Memoir of Mother-Daughter Love at the End of Life. It is my favorite holiday despite my father dying the Monday before Thanksgiving when I was 12 years old. With our world and lives as we had known them ripped from us, that Thanksgiving gave us nothing to be thankful for and nothing to celebrate. Mom and I were too wounded and lost to realize having each other offered a thread of gratitude we could have held onto.
Despite the pain of that Thanksgiving, it became the one holiday we continued to celebrate throughout the years.
Forty-three years after Dad died, on a Thanksgiving I knew would be my mother’s last, I made sure to celebrate by preparing her favorite foods and sharing the dinner with our friends. Somehow I managed to smile and my breaking heart was grateful that I could prepare the special celebration and fill it with love for my mother. I was thankful my mother and I had time—decades my dad and I never knew—time to share, learn about each other, and become best friends.
This Thanksgiving, my husband and I will share with new friends who have graciously opened their lives and home to us. I am grateful we get to be in a home filled with fun, friendship, and love.
2016 has been a year filled with challenges, and yet somehow, every single day, not just Thanksgiving, I have chosen to focus on all I am grateful for. Here are a few:
- A body that works although at times I feel like the tin man in the Wizard of Oz needing oil to get everything moving;
- A home and food to eat;
- The accomplishment of my lifelong wish to write a book and seeing its publication in April. Writing and publishing would have been enough, but this week I learned my book was a Finalist in the Beverly Hills International Book Awards.
- My Golden Retriever Shelby, who gives me reasons to laugh and smile every day;
- Special friends who have loved me and given so much to me for two, three, four, five, and even six decades;
- And last, but certainly not least, I am grateful for my husband Bob, who came into my life and stayed. Every day we are together, I am thankful to have a husband who cooks for me, makes sure I take care of myself, cheers me on, makes me laugh, and is the reason I end each day hearing the words, I love you, as I drift off to sleep with a smile.
I wish for all of you a Thanksgiving with enough good food, friendship and love. I hope these will fill you and you’ll want to spread those feelings as you go through your days so that others will be thankful they know you and will want to pass it on.
If you have read my book, The Space Between: A Memoir of Mother-Daughter Love at the End of Life or are planning to read it I’d greatly appreciative it if you’d write an honest review on Amazon, Goodreads, and/or Barnes & Noble when you’ve finished reading. Your review doesn’t need to be any longer than a few sentences and it’s easy to do if you go to my listing on those sites. Writers need the help of their readers in getting the word out. Thank you in advance!