Most of us will sit down to a bountiful Thanksgiving dinner today.
Most of us do have so much to be thankful for.
The holiday comes at the end of the harvest season. Spring and summer have been good and now is a time to reflect on that bounty as we face the cold gray days of winter.
But there are those in this world and even this town who will spend Thanksgiving alone. Many in this community are bearing some kind of painful burden that makes thankfulness difficult.
Thanksgiving will mean something different to each one of us this year.
This is what Thanksgiving means to me.
Thanksgiving dinner is the annual feeding festival I look forward to with true gusto.
My wife Sara was raised in the South where cooking is a birthright passed from mother to daughter. And Thanksgiving is always a meal where she pulls out all the stops.
I’ll be forced to taste-test everything. And being a fair judge, I’ll probably have to sample every pot at least twice to render a fair verdict. It’s a tough job, but I usually seem to make it just fine.
Turkey, ham, dressing, gravy, sweet potato casserole, homemade rolls and pecan pie are sure things for my plate.
You see, I’m one of the fortunate who has never known true hunger.
Food is the fuel of life. The first priority of every living thing on this earth is the search for food.
This force is so strong, our plentiful society actually has more of a problem with eating too much, rather than not having enough.
I once had someone tell me my middle-age paunch is a sign of prosperity. The theory is I’m eating well and the resulting gut is something to be proud of.
I don’t mean to make light of gluttony, but Thanksgiving is one day when we are allowed to stuff our stomach and push ourselves guiltless away from the table.
In this day and age, and even in this country and community, we need to be thankful for a full tummy.
Thanksgiving means time spent with family to me.
Thanksgiving is the first official celebration of the Holiday Season.
It’s that way at our house.
Thanksgiving is a chance for Ingram’s to gather around the big kitchen table and chew the fat as well as the food.
Thanksgiving will be different for us this year. Momma Reid – the matriarch who held Sara’s family together – passed away a few years ago. We are sort of at a loss as to where to go and who will show up.
This year the family feast is set for my mother’s house.
The kitchen is always hot on Thanksgiving. The first cold day of autumn prompts Momma to light the heater. A hot stove with a golden turkey inside usually adds to the cozy warmth of the big room.
Momma doesn’t like a lot of help so my brothers and me are vanquished to the living room and will probably watch a little football on TV.
But Momma’s voice soon beckons and we move to our places around the old wooden table heaped high with food.
My boys will bring their girlfriends and Sara and I will wink at each other with future thoughts of more places at the table.
The tradition at our table is everyone tells one thing they’re thankful for. Then we all hold hands while Grace is said.
As the moral fabric that holds so many families together slowly frays, I’m thankful for those family traditions that bind us tight.
Thanksgiving is also the quietest holiday for me.
It is one of only four days each year that your Clarksdale Press Register is officially closed.
There are no Fourth of July fireworks on Thanksgiving, no overexcited children tearing into Christmas presents and no New Year bells or whistles.
Thanksgiving is a time to reverently look back on the year and figure out what has gone right and hopefully learn from what has gone wrong.
Thanksgiving is a time to examine the problems of others and confidently reach out and give them a reason to say “Thank You.”
Thanksgiving is a time to forget the negative and humbly offer a prayer of gratitude for all that we have.
Floyd Ingram is the Editor of your Clarksdale Press Register. He tries to give thanks in all circumstances and will gladly thank you if you call his cell at 662-627-1012.