Our little family of three used to have a Thanksgiving tradition of sorts. While one half of our greater-Toronto-area relatives spent the long weekend in the Kawarthas closing up a seasonal cottage, another cluster collected almost an hour north of T-dot to demolish a perfectly roasted turkey.
That changed three years ago, when my husband’s longtime disabilities kicked up a couple of notches. Suddenly the long drive was more daunting than it had been. And we were compelled to celebrate Thanksgiving closer to home.
But the great thing about traditions is that there’s nothing to stop you from starting new ones. And thanks to a generous friend in my neighbourhood, our new family tradition for the past few years has been to spend Thanksgiving (and Easter) at her house, along with her extended family, all and sundry. We do just as respectable a job demolishing the turkey, but without the long-distance driving.
When we left their house this past Sunday night, my friend’s mother handed me a packet of leftovers, embraced me and said: “You know, you’re like another daughter to me.” Breaking bread with kind-hearted people, being treated as family. For this weekend at least, feeling sorry for what we no longer can do – well, it’s not on the menu.