I have a mixture of thoughts and feelings on Thanksgiving 2007. It is my first Thanksgiving without my mom, who passed away on January 2nd. I am thankful, however, that I had her until she was 85 years of age. I am thankful that she died peacefully and without pain.
I am thankful that I am in very good health and that I have been able to shed 34 pounds. I have another 20 to go to reach my ideal weight, but I am in no hurry. I suspect today will be a slight setback towards that goal, but not a serious one.
I am thankful that I am not blinded by some passion that distracts me from real life, whether it be religion, politics, the pursuit of status or some weird hobby. I accept the universe as it is and trust God to know what he’s doing. I accept my talents and my faults, being a human being and imperfect, but I will try my best to use the former and control and improve the latter.
I am thankful that I have a professional career and a body of training and knowledge that allows me to make a decent living and to care for my family. I am thankful for the education that made such things possible. I am thankful for the many great friends and associates I have met through my career who have inspired me with their examples of successful and courageous living.
I am thankful for my nice home. I am thankful that, when it comes to food, my biggest worry is not to get enough, but to avoid eating too much. I am thankful for my eccentric, weird and unpredictable older brother Ted, who has always made life for me both colorful and fun. I am thankful for my eldest son Gary Jr., who understands me better than any other human and who is always there to talk to. And of course, I am grateful for many other relatives, both cousins, offspring, nephews and nieces, grandchildren and in-laws.
Finally, I am thankful that I live in the United States of America, amongst the freest people on earth, amidst peace and prosperity. When I consider all of the people who have lived on the earth, and the difficulties they have faced, it is obvious to me that I am among the luckiest of human beings who have ever lived.