For many Thanksgiving is a time to be with family and/or let it all hang out. We are thrilled to throw the diet out the window and eat as if all the food in the world will disappear. For others it is a time to be home from school, take off from work and just decompress. And others, it’s a great time to travel and reunited with old friends. But for single-parent homes, the holidays can be stressful and financially you are not sure you can do it. After all, you are providing everything for your family out of one salary. Perhaps you feel there is not enough to go around. Many times single-parent families do not get invited out to dinner and in creeps the loneliness and the need to have a pity party. Sadly, the holidays may not be the best time for you. Here are 9 things to be thankful for this holiday season.
- You and your children are loved, it seems so corny but it is true. With the world so full of unhappy, lonely people, you have your children to love you and they have you. That is truly more than most. GO hug your children and tell them you love them and see what you forget in return.
- You have your children. There are so many that will never experience the joy of a child’s hug, kissing a sleeping toddler good night or having a grumpy teen embrace you with genuine love and affection. There are things we take for granted that some will never have. There are orphans who would give anything to have ONE parent. Enjoy the small things.
- We live in a country with religious freedoms. No matter what faith you practice, you can practice it freely in this country. So close to Christmas we need to be mindful of those that are persecuted for what they believe and those that have to worship in secret. What a great joy it is to worship in freedom. You also have the opportunity to pass down your faith to your children.
- A family is a unit. No matter how big or small it is a unit. You may not be able to travel to see other family members but your family unit is here with your children. Cherish who is at the table and stop whining about the tables that are out of reach. It’s a great time to teach your children to be thankful.
- You can provide. While Thanksgiving can be a time of overindulging and extravagance, there is the fact that you are able to provide for your family. You may not have a table overflowing with food but if your children are not going hungry and you have food on the table you are doing well. You can read this in some sort of electronic device. Life is good momma!
- Your children are healthy. We all take our health and our children’s health for granted. Imagine what you would ask for if one of your children was seriously ill. How much would life change if you were shuttling back and forth to the hospital? These are things to consider when you are feeling as if you have nothing to be thankful for.
- Modern Conveniences. Whew…I remember washing dishes by hand, chopping onions for my mother, cleaning greens, hanging at home waiting for the phone to ring, music from the radio and the first computers with NO games. Oh man, times have changed. We now have dishwashers, precut onions (my favorite) clean veggies in the store, cell phones, cable, Netflix and online games for children and adults and facetime. Let’s take a moment to say thanks for modern conveniences.
- Friends. Friends are the family we choose. As a single parent we may be far from the family we were born into, or we have lost parents too early. Friends become so vital to our survival. The laugh and cry with us. We go to them in times of trouble and call them first thing to tell them “good news.” Our friends are everything and we are incredibly grateful for being a part of our lives. Call/text a friend and just say thanks for being my friend!
- Compliments. Good food, a great smelling kitchen, a child’s laughter and more than one dessert is reason alone to say THANK YOU!
There are so many reasons to be thankful this season, these are just a few. Take a moment to truly see WHAT and WHO is front of you. Close you eyes and for a moment think of life without what you have now and then open your eyes and be thankful for who is there. After all, it is the season to be thankful.