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As we wake up on Thanksgiving 2022, let us embrace the day for what it is, a chance for gratitude and to acknowledge the gift of a new sunrise. The Thanksgiving tradition of all-togetherness may be exactly what America needs, too – to get all the grown ups together under one roof and find common ground and a unified path forward. That’s what families have done for centuries, and that is, after all, the foundations of the holiday itself, when conflicts were put aside and the pilgrims sat down with the Wampanoag Indians for a 3-day feast at Plymouth Plantation, though, historically, likely in September rather than November; George Washington proclaimed Thanksgiving Day in February in 1789.
Whatever the day on the calendar, we should strive to continue to let it exist in the spirit of resolution and a day of reflection. This time of year, it is easy to think of holidays past and those who came before us, whose pies, cookies, and company we miss, but whose memories are vibrant in our minds. I often think, too, of the blessings bestowed on me by so many in my life, including so many of you. Let Thanksgiving be a feast of blessings at 95 Piccadilly.
Looking over this great country, it is not yet, as Shakespeare might say, the winter of our discontent. As one season quickly turns to another, we are all aware of rough times. Polls show it’s felt across the world. Because we feel so engulfed by it, it can be difficult to see through the darkness. Inflation and conflicts have made times exponentially more difficult for all of us, but even in our darkest moments, there is always a beacon of light, sources of strength, whispers of wisdom, examples of patience, freedom of forgiveness, expressions of kindness, and rays of hope. As we meander our way through, let us embrace and accept those blessings as they come and, looking around us, strive to be that for others. During times such as these, I am, as much as ever, reminded of the genuine truth of President Kennedy’s words: as we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.
The wisdom of such rhetoric is that we are never wrong to seek ways to be a source of service, for our communities and for one another. Often in my life, mere kindness has been the blessing and people have shown it without their realization, through small tokens of friendship, witnessing amazing grace and spirits of generosity, passion for life, shared visions, and through examples of life as it should be boldly lived. Let gratitude be found in the unnoticeable details and words that make us smile, that maintain and restore our faith in friendships and humanity, even as others and incidents around the world attempt to smother the flames of hope, liberty, and thanksgiving.
Take a minute from this crazy life to sit down and count your blessings, and know that my hope is that, whether you are near or far, you are surrounded by hope, friendship and family, and find yourselves comforted in homes filled with love, faith, and laughter. Continue to be a blessing to one another. Happy Thanksgiving!