by CJ McCartin, Marketing Associate
Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday for many reasons. Mashed potatoes and homemade stuffing top the list, but taking time to reflect on the past year and what I'm grateful for is a close third. However, when I think about the year 2020 a list of negatives flood my mind before any positives: natural disasters, a global pandemic that has taken millions of lives and caused global lockdown, canceled semesters and graduation ceremonies, job losses and business closures, spotty WiFi...the list goes on. But now, sitting here with this list, all of the negatives have taught me one big lesson: Live every day like it’s Thanksgiving.
I’m not saying I'm going to live on turkey and cranberry sauce for the rest of my life. Rather, I’m going to try to be reflective and grateful every day, not just on the last Thursday of November. This year made it glaringly clear that I took so many little things for granted, things I never thought twice about that make such a big difference in my day-to-day life. I never would have added reading a book in a coffee shop, singing along to my favorite song in a crowded arena, learning from a teacher in a classroom, hugging my grandmother, sitting at a table with more than six people in a restaurant, shaking someone's hand, going to the gym, buying more than one roll of toilet paper at a time, or smiling at a stranger on the street without a mask covering my face to the list of things I’m grateful for a year ago, but I should have. Because these small, seemingly insignificant moments are special. I never realized how much I appreciated these things until I couldn’t do them. So as my immediate family and I go around the table and say what we’re grateful for on Thursday, I’m going to say this: I’m grateful for all of the lessons this year has taught me, mostly that I shouldn't wait for Thanksgiving to be grateful.