It is peaceful here on this day before Thanksgiving. My morning helper has gone home. The cat is curled on the bed and hasn't moved for at least two hours. Ray is dozing in his chair. There's a fire in the fireplace and I'm settled on the couch. To perfect this picture my favorite jazz pianist, Don Shirley, is entertaining us via Pandora. I am grateful for all this and more, including the idea that as a country we have chosen to dedicate at least one day a year to thankfulness.
We often forget to be grateful for the difficulties of life, but from my aging perspective I know that hard times brought the greatest gifts. It was problems, despair, and fear that taught me, that forced me to be honest with myself, that pushed me forward in new directions. I'm thankful for the lessons, the shoves, and the happiness that always followed.
It's that thought that keeps me moving ahead now. It allows me to not be consumed with Ray's illness, and it gives me hope for the country, despite the apparent deliberate deconstruction of the State being delivered by Trump and his minions. Our president lives in an alternate reality, a self-created maelstrom of narcissism, hate, greed, and stupidity, and unfortunately we've all been sucked (or suckered) in there with him.
But experience suggests that in a few generations people will look back on this period as something to be happy about. They'll be grateful to Trump for waking us up; thankful that we started paying attention, and voted, and ran for office, and resisted the worst impulses of the worst president. They'll wonder how we managed to sink so low before we awoke, and they'll vow to never let it happen again.
And I am thankful that now, in 2017, Americans still have the time, the courage, and the dedication to make my vision true.
Happy Thanksgiving to all from Ray, the cat, the couch, the fireplace, Don Shirley, and me.