My boys are tucked into bed without a single bit of difficulty. My husband made it safely home after a dinner party with colleagues after work. There is a baked pie cooling on the counter and jello thickening in the fridge. I have a menu ready and placemats painted. Little turkeys made of egg cartons are awaiting their place next to each place setting. My kitchen floor is soiled like never before, and my dishwasher chose today to quit working...when nearly every dish in the house needs a washing.
Today I am calm and centered. It is a special day. Yesterday Thanksgiving passed with nary a second glance. I spent the day with my American girlfriend, shopping, talking, and completing our day with turkey sandwiches. Last night I read Jari the story of the first Thanksgiving. But it was just another day, really. Today, I started out shopping for women's party gifts discussing what Black Friday means to someone who has never heard of it. I came home to make lunch for my son, did some surfing online, and completed my crossguard duties. Then, I started gathering Thanksgiving supplies, collecting items stored from the attic, moving furniture, looking up recipes and gatehring ingredients. And when my boys were home from school, we started working together, all three of us, their excitement catching as music played on MTV.
Decorations were hung, couches moved, tables put together and washed vigorously. They couldn't stop talking about Thanksgiving and most importantly, sharing the day with their friends. Each boy was allowed to invite one friend this year. Both chose and can't wait to share this special day, expand their Belgian friends worlds to include a little something from America. Another piece of them, unknown to the world within our reach. Finding out just a bit more about who they are through this tradition I have passed onto them. A piece of America, a piece of us, within these European boundaries.
Today, though the work has been aplenty, I feel a sense of achievement. As we prepare for our Thanksgiving celebration, a bit later than the actual day itself, I stand back and look at the works I have completed. I am thankful for these two boys in my presence, who though they drive me crazy and cause me worry beyond belief, have also allowed this sense of importance to forge through. Though I'm not even sure they realize it, this celebration is more than just a celebration of Thanksgiving. It is a celebration of their heritage, that little piece they have yet to discover and understand. The piece of me I have worked so hard to carry through to them. I am thankful that I have succeeded. That they are excited to share this with their friends. That it is also important to them.
Surrounding me are people I love and care for. This year, there are two new faces to add to our crowd. Two new faces to accept my boys as this other side shines through. Tomorrow our celebration will begin by being thankful for this opportunity to raise awareness. Awareness of differences. Awareness of something we don't understand. And accepting and celebrating that which we learn. Happy Thanksgiving.