It’s easy to be thankful on Thanksgiving - when your tummy is full of turkey, potatoes, and pumpkin pie it seems like a no-brainer to tell your family that you love them.
But, when 12 a.m. hits, it’s like a magical switch turns on inside of us, and all that thankfulness packs its bags and heads for the door. See you in 365 days, Mr. Thankful! It's been nice to have you visit.
What’s my point? That Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays. I love the food, the football, the laughter, the joy and the parade. Most of all, I like how we aren’t obligated to get people gifts. It’s just a time to gather and be together.
But then, five hours after meeting at the table, people hit the stores. We go crazy for discounts even though we don’t need all of that stuff. Every year, it’s the same thing. All we want is more and more.
I’m not trying to blame anyone for anything. I have never gotten up for Black Friday, simply because, a) I don’t have that much money to begin with, b) I can’t move after I eat turkey, and c) because I need my beauty sleep. But if my friends came and brought me some Starbucks and got me all psyched up, I would probably be willing to go. But why is that?
I have so much stuff that I already do not need, so why do I feel the need to go out and buy more? I can’t tell you why. I’m no expert. I’m in just as deep as the rest. However, I can remind you of what we do have and what we can be thankful for.
Thankfulness isn’t seasonal. It doesn’t call for a designated day. We can smile and thank our friends and sincerely tell each other why they are special every single day. I know a lot of people probably already do this, but it’s nice to reinforce the message.
Christmas is a time for celebration. It shouldn’t be about who has the most gifts or who got the best stuff. I feel like this is what it is turning into. When Black Friday hits, it seems that everything is focused on consumption. To have a day that is all about us right after a holiday that is about everyone else in our lives, seems wrong.
See, I like a lot of things. I like clothes and shoes and bags and movies and electronics and sports gear and anything else you can buy in a store. But I don’t like to spend a lot of money. When I’m paying, I’m a tightwad. So I’m just as guilty in buying things just because there’s a sale tag on them as the next person.
I just want to know why I feel this way. As I’m typing this, Thanksgiving has already passed. It’s behind me and all that’s left are the leftovers in the fridge. But wait - something else is still here. My brother. My mom. My dad. My dogs. My family. Everything that I’m thankful for is still here or is, at least, for the time being. I don’t have to stop being thankful for the things in my life.
Just like that turkey and that gravy are here to stay, so are the things that I love about life. I don’t want to get overwhelmed by commercial products and Macy’s ads this holiday season. I want to enjoy everything like no presents are arriving. Because the things that I really need, I already have.
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