Thanksgiving just might be my favourite holiday. This statement has been met with a few quizzical looks lately, but I am prepared to back it up. It is a celebration that combines tradition and flexibility. Friends and family gather or connect without the stress of gift giving or pressure of other holidays. It is of a secular nature, but can be recognized as important for any number of faiths. Most of all, it emphasizes something that is explicitly simple, yet overwhelmingly important: reflection on and expression of thanks. In other words, it has a sublime balance to it.
While it is important to be grateful throughout the year, this weekend’s holiday helps us draw attention to those things we are thankful for. Relationships, particularly family and friends, are consistently first on my list of things I am thankful for. Last year’s Thanksgiving post was focused on relationships, and a year later I am even more appreciative and fortunate to have people in my life that make me a better person. However, on this Thanksgiving I want to note that I am thankful for my health and physical condition. We often say we are glad to have good health, and wish good health on those we care about, but I find recently that I am rather humbled and extremely grateful to do so much that I probably take for granted. Without being healthy I would not have been able to visit so many of the places I have been to in this word. I would not have been able to engage in so many of the activities that bring me joy. Many of the relationships in my life are fostered by activities that would be impossible if I was not healthy. Finally, my day to day existence is completely easy due to my state of fitness. In short, I am extremely fortunate, and as a result, extremely thankful.
From this extends thanks to specific people. I am thankful to my parents who instilled within me a priority for health and fitness. I am thankful to my friends and family who inquire after my health and encourage me to take care of myself (yes, even though I am stubborn). I am thankful to those friends who I go on outdoor physical adventures with as they place safety and health above accomplishments, records, and summits.
On a specific note, I am thankful for everything I have been, and will be involved in this weekend: spending time with a number of close friends I care about, listening to live music, laughing with friends and family, being active outdoors with awesome people I care about, spending time with family, spending time with little buddies I care about, playing hockey, perhaps watching some film, enjoying a fantastic meal, and having the time to reflect and be thankful. What a great Thanksgiving, filled with so many things that bring me joy, and it’s mainly due to some of you who are reading. I don’t think I could ask for a better one.
I hope you get to spend time with people you care about this weekend.
Merci – Thank you – Happy Thanksgiving!