Thanksgiving is a holiday I remember in blinks of memory.
My grandmother with her head bowed, leading the blessing.
My Aunt Bee proudly presenting her special green Jell-O molded salad for everyone to admire.
Our son Alex, racing through the house as a three-year-old, making monster noises and holding out his hands with pitted olives stuck on the end of each finger.
Seven-year-old Amelia and her eight-year-old cousin Michelle decorating place cards and deciding where each relative should sit (and arguing loudly over whether Aunt Nancy’s name was spelled “Ant Nancy” or “Ante Nancy”).
Nephew Dan coming in just before dinner, still muddy from playing in the traditional high school rivalry game between Plymouth North and Plymouth South.
Baking pies with my granddaughters.
Holding a tiny grandbaby and eating my dinner with one hand.
Somewhere, we probably have photographs from every Thanksgiving – but even if we don’t, I have them all in my heart.
Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday – a chance for all of us to give thanks for all the things that previous generations have given to us. But it is also a chance to think about the world we are leaving to the generations that will follow us.
I’m deeply grateful for every blessing in my life. I’m also deeply grateful to have the chance to fight for a world that includes opportunities for all our children and a real chance for hard-working people to build some security.
I realize that the changes we need to make will be hard, and I know that we won’t win every fight – but I know that if we fight, we have a chance to build something better.
Thanksgiving is a time for us to be grateful, and I’m grateful to have you by my side. Your stories, your hopes and wishes are with me today and every day.
From my family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!