The Internet can be a cruel and unusual abyss of half-cocked opinions and bargain basement analysis, especially when it comes to Black wom...
My Cup Runneth Over
I grew up in an African-centered home (notice I DIDN’T say Afrocentric) and the history of Thanksgiving in its true form was taught. In my house, when I was very young, it was just another Thursday and I hadn’t a clue what was taking place in the homes of others. Plus, we were vegetarian and I didn’t know turkeys did anything but gobble. My first feast was at the age of 8, because my grandmother celebrated. Fast-forward to 14 years old and the bend happened. Children and family will make you do things you wouldn’t normally do. My mother, all of a sudden, was cooking a turkey (that we still didn’t eat, mind you) for family coming in from out of town. There was a wealth of goodies on the table and people sharing my bloodline sitting around it. I was in glutton heaven. From then on, we celebrated the fact that nobody had to go to work or school and it gave us time to be together, so why not have a 6 course meal, right?
As an adult, I haven’t bothered to adopt “Thankstaking” for a political stance, but continue to appreciate this Thursday full of food, family, and fun. Now, I can really take the time to think on what I’m thankful for, instead of it just being one of those forced activities as a child, because it is IMPORTANT to take stock of our lives from time to time.
This year I am thankful for:
Having NO debt. It was a great cleansing process that ended with not enough balloons and confetti from the final creditor. Apparently all that rude conversation I was being hit with prior to the last payment was out of the loving relationship they had with my regular payments. Bringing those to an end brought about the blank voice of disdain. Not even so much as a “thank you.” Debt free is my new religion...until I purchase a house.
The antics of children. The wee ones keep me in stitches all day. Due to the randomness of not having a classroom of my own this year (which I’m not thankful for), I don’t have to be confined to one space with one group of children’s antics. That kind of closeness leads one more toward cussing than laughter. But I digress. Only a 3 year old could call me “Ms. Himber” and not get ignored. Only a 5 year old could pick his nose and not make me walk away in disgust (though the feet in my mind have carried me away from the nasty kid). Biz Markie making a song about it didn’t make it cute. And while the ones who struggle concern me, I don’t have to hold them as closely to me, still grateful to have the chance to see what they ARE good at in a different context. This year is teaching me things I never expected, though I did expect to be teaching more.
Good sense. Yeah, I’m claiming it and you ain’t got to agree. But if you don’t, you ain’t got good sense. It’s protected me from a great deal this [incomplete] year. Which I will combine with being thankful for being a member of the Dirty 30’s club. Since crossing that line (scary to some, never to me) that is the big Three-OH, I’m a lot clearer about what I will and “won’t goddamn do.” The wisdom of my 30’s has also graced me with the good sense to know when to say NO with a smile and when to say NO through clenched teeth and a low growl. Either way, the result is the same--you’re going to leave me alone.
Forgiveness. There’s that word again. I’ve been working hard at understanding this concept. And whatever I’ve gotten from it has lifted a weight off of me and now I’m floating like an angel, free to dip and dive from what appears as road blocks at first. Forgiveness has also strengthened my foresight, enhanced further by my good sense, and helps me to see patterns headed my way. Like a good friend always says, “I’ve seen this movie, I know how it ends.” In essence, forgiveness doesn’t always mean we gon’ be folks again. And my foresight, combined with my good sense, has taught me to look out for your ass coming down the pike in different costuming. I’m good, thanks.
No need to run down the whole list here. Some of this is personal anyway. Take a moment to think about what you’re thankful for, or even who.
But before I end, I’m most thankful that I’ve broken my silence, able to pitch my 2 cents one penny at a time. And I’m thankful that you care enough to hang out here and help me grow my craft. Cuz one day, I’m going to be thankful for my book sales, and I’ll owe you each a card.
Watch me move.