Thanks for What?

The fourth Thursday of November is a Thanksgiving Day, which means that our thoughts often turn to thanks throughout the month. Often, someone will start a “daily thanks” series on Facebook or Twitter. Others will post their thanks in their blogs, or private journals.

Six years ago though, my question was, “give thanks for what?”

You see, my husband had died the year before, a few months before Thanksgiving. I didn’t have my partner, lover, guy I fought with, father of my children physically in my life. I wasn’t thankful. At. All.

Then it occurred to me. I might not have David next to me physically. But, I had his memory, the memory of times we shared. Most important, I had people, events, and experiences I’d never have enjoyed had I not met, loved and married him.

I took that second Thanksgiving without him to force myself to be thankful for all, or some, of what he’d brought into my life.

I started of course, with our family. Our children and grandchildren. Without him, they wouldn’t exist. And they are special people each in their own right.

Of course, there were our children’s spouses, people who have enriched my children’s lives. And who doesn’t want their children to have everything possible? The in-loves, did more than add to my children’s lives though, they made mine much fuller too, and are the reason I have  the six wonderful grandchildren.

After our family, there was his. His parents, who accepted me into their family whole-heartedly. People who loved me almost as much as they loved the son I’d married. His siblings added joy and interest to my life, as did their children.

All of which I would have never known had I not met and married David.

I’m thankful for the other  people I met, as a result of being knowing and being married to him. Some of whom are now life-long friends, such as the people of Stuart where he taught for twenty-six year.

Experiences we shared are another reason for thanks. Some of which were new to me, like the livestock show world. And the first time he took me to see a ‘calf’ being prepared for show. Now, this city girl thought “baby” when he said “calf,” those small cute creatures nursing or lying in the tall grass hiding from humans.

Um. No. That wasn’t what he meant. The animal I saw was huge. To me it looked to be at least 5000 pounds, and big. Did I mention big? In reality it probably weighed about 1500 pounds and was a little over a year old. In human terms that would be a baby. To this city girl, it was a full grown cow, and little ten year olds had no business being close to it, much less leading it around.

The calf though, just stood there in her grooming chute (looked like a small stall to me) and waited patiently while the humans brushed and clipped her hair making her look beautiful. Over the years, I’ve learned about all kinds of show animals. Thanks to David.

That memory though, is one I treasure. The look on his face as I realized that huge animal was the “baby” he’d taken me to see was worth the surprise and fear I felt at that moment.

There are so many more memories, of people places and things. Every year, I list a few of them. I list them in my blog, on Facebook, Twitter or in my private journal. The lists remind me that I have much to be thankful for, and David is the reason.

Whether your husband is still living or has gone on, consider some of the gifts he’s given you. Share some of them with us below in the comment section.

NitaNita Bashear blogs at  Devoted To Quilting and Follow Your Rainbow

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