An Early Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving is still a week away, and I’m already looking forward to ignoring my diet. It occurs to me that this year has been an unusual one in many ways and that Thanksgiving is here just in time to help us all keep everything in perspective.

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday … by far. But it’s not just the food or the unspoken license to eat until you collapse on living room furniture. I like Thanksgiving because I think of it as a unifying event — a reason, or maybe just an excuse — to put aside our innumerable differences and give thanks for what we have as a nation.

Of course, you and I may be thankful for very different things, and some of them may even be diametrically opposed, but next Thursday we can both press the pause button to reflect on the fact that we’re grateful for something and that we have the opportunity to embrace, advocate, enjoy, elevate, denigrate or completely take it for granted right here in the good ol’ U.S.A.

With 325 million people, it’s rare that we speak with any kind of unity or feel like part of the greater whole. In fact, there’s so much to divide us — politics, race, religion, age, gender, ethnicity, economics and more — that true unity is impossible. It seems we only get close in times of great national tragedy.

It seems there’s more dividing us today than ever before. But it does not make me lose heart or to be thankful for less.

Next Thursday I will gather with my family and be grateful for what we have and for the good things we enjoy. I will try to set aside my petty aggravations, frustrations, fears and trepidations and look forward to the opportunities ahead.

I hope you can do the same.

Things are not perfect, but they are good. They have never been perfect.

One thing I am particularly thankful for is the fact that I can support my family by working in an industry I love in a country I cherish and with people I respect. If you’re reading this, there’s a good chance you can say the same.

And for that I am truly thankful.

A rising tide lifts all boats. Let’s be that tide.