This Thanksgiving is going to be practically none-existent for us, but that is alright because we actually have LOTS to be grateful for, and we certainly don't need a turkey and all the trimmings to remind us to give thanks.
So that actually leads me to ponder... Why do many wait around until the day of Thanks-giving to give thanks? Should we not be giving thanks on a daily, even moment-by-moment, basis?
As Muslims, we are told that we need to be giving thanks and showing gratitude continually. I remember our teacher told us several weeks ago in class that we must always remember that even how great our hardships are, there is another who has even greater hardships; and for that reason, we must be grateful and give thanks to Allah (swt) that our struggles are not as difficult.
This Thanksgiving also comes on the four-month anniversary of my Dad's passing. So I also have a few mixed emotions on that aspect. While it is still difficult for me, I give thanks and gratitude that I had my Dad as long as I did, when many lose their father's very young. I give thanks and gratitude that my Dad lived to see his 88th year, and that he lived a vibrant, amazing, and extraordinary life.
I even give thanks and gratitude that he died in the way that he always wanted, without pain, without fear, at home, in the arms of his beloved wife (my mother), and in his sleep, quickly. So while my heart yearns for him, for his hugs, to hear his voice, to see his physical being; my heart also soars at the amazing amounts of blessings that Daddy had, and the gratitude and immense amount of thanks for the life he gave (and showed) us all, for shaping us to be the people we are today. And I pray that he will be regarded for all his amazingly loving, kind, caring, and good deeds and that he will attain Firdaus.
My Dad used to tell us to always be thankful and grateful to Allah (swt) for all that we had. If we did not have something we wanted, we had to see was what we DID have; we had a home, our family, our love for one another, we had food on the table and in our bellies, we had our health; and most of all, we had the knowledge and the love of Allah (swt) - what greater gift could we, as mere humans, have?
So, while there won't be a turkey gracing our table this year, or all the fixings that go along with it; we don't need to limit ourselves and our thanks-giving to just one day out of an entire year. I am filled with gratitude and thankfulness constantly.
I wish all my friends, family, and readers a wonderful, blessed, Happy Thanksgiving; but I don't just limit those wishes to tomorrow, I wish this as a constant to you always.