Monday, December 5, 2011

living in thankfulness

I loved Thanksgiving.  Ours was spent in Stillwater eating great food, playing games, watching "Tangled," and having some great conversation.

This year, the Thanksgiving holiday felt pretty different.  Not only do we have a kid, but the 'break' meant something different.

My days are spent at home taking care of Duke and teaching piano.  I got a break from teaching piano and from various chores while we were in Stillwater, but no break from being a mom.  You're thinking I'm an idiot that I just figured this out.  Hopefully it'll make more sense once I explain myself.

It's not that I expected a break from being a mom, but I did, by default and conditioning, expect Thanksgiving to feel a certain way - stress free, no worries, no duties ... that kind of feeling where all you are required to do is eat and laugh and be with people.  Things like sitting away from the table to breastfeed while everyone is enjoying a meal or being exhausted from getting up in the night/early morning with Duke weren't necessarily parts of the holiday I was considering.

It made me wonder if I've ever really realized what Thanksgiving is.  It's really easy to be thankful for things when I have 5 days off work and get to do nothing but relax.  It's trickier when life still goes on ... "life" meaning Duke needs to eat, Duke needs to burp, Duke needs a diaper change, Duke needs to be put down for a nap, Duke needs a bath, and Duke needs to take his vitamins.  Oh, and would you mind doing those things while you're sleep-deprived as well?  I'm still a very new mom.  I'm not saying I don't like doing those things but I am saying that I'm still getting used to it. (Side note:  The exhausting joy that is motherhood has truly gotten better and better each day.)

I've always thought of Thanksgiving as a huge break from everything.  I guess what I'm saying is that time off work, great food, and relaxing do not equal Thanksgiving and do not need to be present in order for thanks to be given.  I need to be living in thankfulness even when I feel like I don't get a break.

On the way home from Stillwater, Colt and I found ourselves singing the duet "I See the Light" from "Tangled."  We had some really interesting moments of my unpracticed voice cracking and Colt's version of the harmonies going south.  Finally, we heard a cry of desperation from the backseat.  For someone who always falls asleep on car rides, this guy was serious.  He would have no more.

Duke was thankful we stopped singing.  :)  I am thankful for a loving and considerate husband, a precious son, our sweet families, great friends, our home, the gift of music, and the cold weather ... just to name a few.

Happy Belated Thanksgiving to all!


  1. Hey Claire, I received your Thanksgiving card today! Thanks so much for sending it. And I really appreciate this post. Thank you for the reminder about true thankfulness :)

  2. I thought this was really interesting Claire... When I think about Christmas break this year I think about sitting around doing nothing, but I never thought about how being a new mom, that doesn't really happen. Anyway, I always love your blog posts :)


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