Well, my friend's trip to Hawaii is coming over tomorrow for Thanksgiving and I'm sitting in the rubble of my home, trying hard not to think about all the housecleaning I didn't do when I was trying to proof my novel. Since stuff keeps falling off the table because it's too crowded with crap to hold the doo-dads on the edges, you have to know my powers of self-delusion are damn near supernatural. Since we have three birthdays in the span of a month (Kewyn's, Wendy's--the one bringing her trip to Hawaii, and Trystan's) I think I'm going to leave the big HAPPY BIRTHDAY banner up in the corner of the kitchen, but I will try to clean up the old battery collection on the crap-catcher that splits the kitchen from the living room (mostly for the benefit of the trip-to-Hawaii, whose real name is Paul, and about whom I now know so many intimate and embarrassing details I will hardly be able to look at him across the dinner table without erupting into a big wollop of snarking giggles.) My husband really needs to figure out what to do with those batteries, though--thank you, baby nintendos and Playschool for making that collection almost mythic and artistic in proportion.
Holidays are traditionally a time of stress for me anyway. When thanksgiving goes well, I usually dart out of the house for a walk at about nine at night, meditating on all the stuff I'm truly thankful for. Like most of us on a computer, there is an impressive list, and these are the things that move me to tears nearly every day and keep me going. But in order to get to that point where I can take a breath, I usually have to do what I call the 'split family shuffle'.
The details are long and painful--sometime I'll jot them down for sheer cathartic value, but not today. What it amounts to is that between Matt and I, we have as many sets of parents as we have children, and that I'm generally responsible for getting my mom-mom (as opposed to my stepmom, who is terrifyingly capable) to family functions. Since it's an 1 1/2 hour round trip, and it has to be made twice, it tends to be an exhaustive footnote to the day. This year, I'm picking her up, probably taking her to my uncle's for dinner, and then (if I can't appeal to someone to take her home) I'm going to my own house and my own kids and for Wendy and her trip-to-Hawaii...then, after dinner, turning around and picking her up and taking her home. My one consolation is that this year, (as opposed to other years) I only have one family to deal with, and not two or (as it has been on occassion) three. Yes, there are sometimes I am truly thankful that Matt's dad lives in Delaware.
Which brings me to maybe the one thing I am most thankful for.
Matt and I are happy. Yes, there is a possibility that he has a whole other family in a tenement somewhere off Stockton blv., and has been shooting drugs in his eyeballs for years, but, honestly, I doubt that he has the time. I'm a pretty demanding heifer, mostly, and I'm jealous of his time spent in useless pursuits--like work and getting the car maintained. So mostly I make sure he's happy by sheer force of will, and by doing this, we're both making our children happy. God, Goddess, and anyone else who's listening, I'm grateful for my amazing (and amazingly patient) spouse, and my healthy, happy children. I'm in a unique position to let the Universe at large know that I'm absolutley sincere about this--I will never take my home or my spouse or my children or my health for granted, ever.
Thank you, oh vast and mighty universe--may you spread your good fortune on all who are listening--and on the many many more who are not. Cheers, everybody--I say when this is over, we all descend on Roxie's house like rabid locusts after Lent and raid her chocolate-rum ball collection. Who's up for a trip to Oregon?