Seeing Thanksgiving.


It’s just what we do. At Thanksgiving, we go around the table and say what we’re thankful for. It’s all very After School Special-ish, but I love it. Gratitude dressed in words takes on a life of its own. And it’s beautiful.

Every year, when it’s my turn, the family holds their collective breath…and wait…for the tears. Every. Year. I’m not the crying type, but put me in front of the people I need the most, at a table full of things we didn’t have growing up, surrounded by the soft sounds of jibaro music, and I’m a goner. Every. Year.

My mother’s battle with cancer was long and it left a scar on my heart. The type of scar that protrudes from your skin, so others can see if it they stared hard enough. She’s tired, she tells me on a phone conversation earlier this week, and she thinks she’s losing her sight. From all the radiation. I don’t know what to say. Because life is breathtaking and I want her to see it. Forever. Last night at the dinner table I cried. I said I was thankful for my mother’s health. Though fragile, she’s here. And even though the turkey was still frozen at dinner time, and her yams not thoroughly cooked, she celebrated life. With us. And it’s beautiful.