Let it go, let it go… hard to believe such great advice could come from a character in a Disney movie. Thanks Elsa! Even if it’s just for the holidays, I’m letting it all go!
I want to enjoy this season. I can say that as a kid, I never enjoyed the holiday season. It seemed that every Thanksgiving and every Christmas, something went wrong. It usually, okay… always, involved my parents. Sometimes, the holidays bring families closer and other times; well, they bring out the worst in people. My parents would tend to argue during the holidays. When I was younger, we would divide our time up between my mom’s family and our family (which consisted of mom, dad, me, my brother and my dad’s friends). We would first go to my grandmother’s house where we would spend time with my aunts, uncles and cousins on my mom’s side. Then we would go home where we would sit around while my dad’s friends came and went the rest of the day.
The fighting would start when times for leaving home to go to my grandma’s and times that we had to return home to accommodate my dad’s friends were discussed. You see, my mom thought spending time with her family took priority over spending time with my dad’s friends. My dad, well that’s another story. Nothing took precedent over his friends. We would eventually leave the house and go to grandma’s, once mom was in a snit and us kids were just annoyed. My dad would do the pleasantries while he was there, but you could always tell he’d rather be somewhere, anywhere else. We would finally leave and end up home, where there was usually one or two of those friends I mentioned waiting. My dad would finally finish off his perfect holiday by drinking with his friends until they would leave and he’d pass out.
I have vague memories of the holidays I spent with my mom’s family. She has four sisters and three brothers and for some odd reason, none of them ever really got along. Needless to say, there isn’t one memory that doesn’t involve an argument between two or more people. The fight could start over any little thing; and of course, there was often alcohol involved here as well.
When I was old enough to avoid the gatherings at my grandmother’s, I did. I guess it also got so bad as time went on, that even my parents stopped going to my grandma’s for the holidays. The only negative, we missed spending time with my grandma. None of this was her fault.
During my early adulthood, I began to avoid going to my parents for the holidays. It wasn’t too hard considering I had moved to another state. Even after moving back to my hometown, I still avoided it as much as possible. In recent times, we have had a sort of falling out. Tomorrow will be the first holiday that I purposefully will not contact my parents; even to say Happy Thanksgiving.
I have also recently had a falling out of sorts with my oldest son. He believes that his father and I are mad at him because he’s made the choice to live with his bio mom. That couldn’t be further from the truth. We are just concerned for his future, that’s all. I did invite him to dinner tomorrow, and though he never really answered; I know where he will be spending his day. I can’t say I blame him. It’s the first holiday he’s been able to spend with his biological mom in almost seven years. I really do get it; I’m just happy that he will be happy.
Tomorrow I will be cooking our first Thanksgiving dinner in our new home (well, we’ve been here ten months). My mother in law and her friend, my brother in law and nephews will be joining us. I am anticipating an amazing time!
With this being said, I am making a choice to let it all go. I know that God says I am to forgive those that have wronged me. I include my parents and my son in that category. Intentional or not, they have wronged me or hurt me over and over again for years. Even though they have never said ‘I’m sorry’ and I may never forget the hurt, I know I must forgive them and move on. If that means not having them in my life, then that must also be part of God’s plan. I will let go and trust Him with all things.
To my readers: I want to wish you all a very Happy Thanksgiving! Whether spent with family or friends or even alone, I wish you all the best tomorrow.