Sunday, 13 October 2013
In the age of social media, you can't escape the barrage of holiday wishes - so many voices added to the cacophony that in some ways it seems to dampen the meaning somewhere around hour two. Being thankful is not reserved for a single day or weekend - though I suppose some of us need this fateful reminder - no matter how egregious the colonial origins of this holiday might be. For my family, these precious days have been a whirlwind of activity with last minute preparations to get our house on the market. Seeing them all pitching in, giving time they can ill-afford in their busy lives - has been humbling and filled me with guilt. My Dad - who has been tirelessly commuting almost every day from Duncan, sometimes with my Mom in tow - is not in perfect health right now himself - suffering a painful condition in his joints that makes each job a Herculean task. He has powered through the pain - all in an effort to do the things we simply don't have the skills to do. My mom has yanked every off-putting weed - or anything that resembles one - painfully all around the property and cleaned more surfaces than I can count. Then there are my nephews, Liam and Andrew, who in addition to volunteering their precious time to move furniture, haul boxes, power-wash a moss infestation off our driveway - have taken some time to chat - something we haven't done enough of in recent years. It is wonderful to rediscover just how much I appreciate them - their differences as pronounced as those their Mom and I uncovered when we were young. People assume that two kids raised in the same household will have some kind of sameness - something that denies just how unique our perspectives and experiences might be - how our natures could not be more separate and apart. Everything about my nephew's differences I appreciate - and I know they have had the benefit of the world's most supportive parents to foster their many shared traits - their empathy, their kindness, their incredible loyalty - which may not be so obvious to them from where they sit right now - two men at the very beginning of their adult lives - marching to their own tunes - and in a way that I honestly could not love more. So at the risk of redundancy - you can see how much I have to be thankful for...as I swallow what is left of my pride and plead for help - they are there - 100 per cent - my beautiful, amazing, giving family.