Thanksgiving Eve

It’s strange to think that people my age are starting to host the holidays for the first time. I’ve been doing it a good 20 years now. It’s just one of the many things my parents didn’t do. I can remember them decorating and having a Christmas tree twice in my life. Then my mom said Matt was allergic to Christmas trees and that was the end of that.

I don’t know how I became the responsible one. There is a big difference between wanting that and needing to be that because my parents weren’t able to step up. The normal progression of life never happened for me. I can’t remember being a child either. My in-laws hosted a couple times but they couldn’t handle it either. I tried to kill two birds with one stone and have my family and Paul’s family together for Christmas but that became the grandma wars.

Hosting does not make me nervous. I’ve been doing it long enough now. My brother Luke and his family stayed with us this past weekend for my niece’s swim meet. I wish I had that opportunity as a kid. I begged my mom for more than just beginner swimming classes but she said no. Maybe if I went to a school with a pool. Maybe if we had more money or if I could get a ride. Maybe if I wasn’t pulled out of school for three years when my brother Matt was homebound. Maybe if I wasn’t so far behind the other kids in sports when I went back to school. That’s a lot of maybes but the answer was still no.

I wish I could’ve started swimming and running as a kid like my niece. Sports were not encouraged at home. My mom didn’t go to the swim meet. Paul, Angel, and I went. I told my mom if she wanted to come over to visit my brother would be over on Saturday night. My mom came to my house but we were still at the meet. I could tell she was upset no one was home. I wasn’t expecting her to just stop by expecting us to be home. It’s odd my parents never supported their children or grandchildren in sports. It seemed like a foreign concept to them.

I was happy to have the opportunity to see my niece compete. It’s a huge relief to know my brother is a good dad to his kids even though my dad was not a good dad to him. His kids probably have no idea the way it was as it should be. There were several times Luke helped host the holidays over the years. We are the healthy ones, the ones who made it through.

Tomorrow I will be hosting Thanksgiving for 16 people. I’m sure it will be a great time. We have a lot to be thankful for. I have to remember that when I start thinking of the things I’ve missed out on.

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