Well, I just looked at last year's Thanksgiving Day post, and darned if I'm not pretty much thankful for the same stuff - family, friends, work, health, home - again this year.
In addition, I'm thankful for the health of my brother, Richard, who gave us a scare this fall. Fortunately, he's made tremendous progress, and we're hopeful he'll continue to do so. (And, as today is his birthday, here's a shout out: Happy Birthday, Stick.)
I'm thankful for Kennedy Brothers PT. Last year, I was recovering from a recent broken arm/shoulder. But I had stopped making much progress with my physical therapy, and was told that I'd probably need surgery to restore anything near full range of motion.
Thanks to Kennedy Brothers, I've gotten almost all my arm function back. Surgery? No thanks/no need.
I'm thankful that the Boston Celtics won the NBA Championship this year. Not for myself - I'm not that big a basketball fan. But for my husband, a life long Celtics fan (and former starter for the St. Charles K of C team from Bellows Falls, Vermont), well.... Now he can take pleasure in watching a skilled team that is a delight to see in action, and doesn't have to resort to watching re-runs of twenty-plus year old Bird-McHale-Parrish games when he wants to see great Celtics' basketball being played.
I'm thankful that we have a new president elect who is calm, thoughtful, intelligent, well-read, articulate....He certainly has his work cut out for him, but I'm certainly thankful he's here - or will be as of 1/20/2009. (Extra thanksgiving points for our fab first-lady-to-be, and their completely adorable little girls.)
I'm thankful for the work done by St. Francis House, which helps Boston's poor and homeless rebuild their lives. St. Francis House (a.k.a., "Frank's" in street parlance) starts with the basics: meals, clothing showers...and moves on up to their excellent Moving Ahead Program (MAP), a program that helps people who are ready and able to take back their lives. One of my favorite things to do is to go to a MAP graduation and hear the graduates talk about their life's journey - and their hopes.
Thanksgiving is as good a day as any to think about the basic services that St. Francis House provides - starting with those all- important meals. Over the last year, we've seen the number of meals served each day grow from an average of 700-800 to over 1,000 - with some days hitting 1,200. These numbers will only grow as the economy gets worse, I'm afraid.
I'm thankful for all the donors (especially my family and friends) who make the work of St. Francis House possible. The art work shown above, by the way, is done by one of the guests working in the House's Art Room.
I'm sure there are other things I'm forgetting to be thankful for.
And, of course, as an atheist, I'm not quite sure who I'm directing all my thanks for to.
So maybe this time around, I'll change the wording a bit.
Forget that I'm "thankful for". Let's just say that this year I'm "thankful to."
Happy Thanksgiving 2008.