Today, as I sit back and look on the events of Thanksgiving day, the only thought that comes through my mind is, where did it go to? I wake up at 8:00am and the first time I look at the clock it’s 9:00am. Then the next thing I know, it’s 2:00pm. I turn around again and it’s dinner time, then a hop, skip and a jump later, it’s 9:00pm. I found myself in my room by 11:30pm, exhausted. Asleep by 1:00a…I know that seems like I a long time to be awake after going upstairs to relax, but that’s normal for me.
I’m sure that the scenario above might sound like your day..well except, maybe for the asleep at 1a. My Thanksgiving day wasn’t a typical one for me, and it wasn’t one I was looking forward to either. This year, instead of going to my several family gatherings, I was at work…all day (9:00a-9:00p).
The thing is, looking back, I don’t think I would change this option for the world. It’s not that I didn’t miss my family, because I did…more than anything. It’s not because I enjoy my job, even though I do…immensely. I truly think it’s because for the first time in five years, I was able to relax on Thanksgiving day. Yep, you heard right, I was able to relax even though I was at work.
I work in a group home that houses eight men, fifty-five and older. Each of them has some sort of developmental disability. The thing that was different about yesterday is that we had only five of them. Of those five, two spend quite a bit in their time, one sits in a chair all day. Which leaves two guys that we typically have to watch. One went early in the day to get something that would keep him occupied all day.
Which drops it down to one guy. He’s, perhaps, the hardest one to keep occupied. After all, he is our client with autism. If you know anything about people who have autism, they do not sit still for long…if at all. Even so, he was a little wound up at first, but after lunch he calmed down. Meaning we had peace for the rest of the day.
So, we were able to actually sit down, after all, the only thing that was left to do was to keep up on laundry. We made a simple lunch that used very few dishes, so we didn’t have a ton of those to wash either. I went to the store and picked up our pre-cooked dinner. It only needed reheated. I put the turkey in at 3:00p and started the rest of it around 4:30p. By 5:15p we were eating dinner. Then, by 7 we were back to only having laundry to finish.
So, while I missed my family, I can honestly say that I did not miss the craziness of trying to make it to each and every family event. After-all, since both my husband and I come from divorced families, trying to keep track of all the gatherings can make us crazy some years. While we’re learning to pick and choose our stops and have gotten better about juggling it all each year, we still end up exhausted at the end of it…not to mention stuffed from all the fantastic food too.
I can honestly say that I would not change the fact that I worked all day for anything. That is because even though I was at work we didn’t have a lot of actual work that needed done. The best part? When my boss called to check up on us…I mentioned we were just having a chill-day, she was all for it! Can you say (to steal a word from my younger sister)….
So as I look ahead to today and tomorrow, what do I see? More work. I have an eight hour day today and a twelve hour day tomorrow. Then finally a break for a day before going at it again next week. My total hours for this week will be in the 60-65 range…I know I’m nuts. Rather than going into work the next couple days bummed that I can’t just stay home and chill with my sister, dad and husband, I’m going to
try to look at it as a chance to do something I love. A chance to make a different in each of these men. So here’s to the wrap-up of a long week.
Oh, I say thanksgivings day rather than thanksgiving because I truly believe that we should live a life of thanksgiving, and if we’re doing that, the only difference about the last Thursday in November is the fact that we get together with friends or family and eat some amazing food.
How was your Thanksgiving day?