When I was a kid, it was all about being around family and taking time to remember the things we are thankful for. It was a humble time of joy and gratitude. We had traditions, like sitting around the dinner table and taking turns announcing what you're thankful for. Anyone else remember doing that?
But things slowly started changing over the years. People and traditions evolved, and now I wonder what happened to that holiday I used to enjoy so much. This year, especially, I'm amazed by the attitude people are taking about Thanksgiving. This is what it seems to be all about now:
Impressing othersThe family is all getting together, and keeping up appearances is super important. From the four pies you're bringing to the outfit chose, everything needs to impress the extended family members you haven't seen since last year.
FightingDomestic violence reports skyrocket on Thanksgiving. Seriously, look up the stats for your local PD.
Stuffing your faceHow does eating as much as you possibly can without puking translate to being thankful for what you have? I know people who actually plan what they're going to wear based on how much stretchability it has for an expanding stomach. Gross!
Getting more stuffAll anyone seems to talk about on Thanksgiving anymore is Black Friday. People go out and trample over each other to buy more stuff they don't even need, just hours after they were supposed to be with their families, being grateful for the things they already have. Go figure.
Since when is this Thanksgiving? Instead of remembering to be grateful for what we have, we have turned this holiday into just another excuse to over-indulge ourselves. It's like we've slowly altered it to stand for the very opposite of what it was meant to.
It makes me sad and I don't see what the appeal is in this distorted version of the holiday. To me, Thanksgiving will always be a time for my loved ones and I to reflect on our lives and ourselves, and to remember that we are lucky to have what we do have, whether the harvests were abundant this year or not. It is a time to throw out our constant want for more, and be humble. Maybe even help out those who have less than we do, and give up some of the things we have and don't need.
That's what Thanksgiving is to me.