What’s your plans for Thanksgiving? Have you given any thought how you are going to handle all that food around? We need to think about it and set boundaries, or we will fall into a free for all. It’s just not worth it to feel so bad and sick the next day. Thanksgiving is really not about the food.
I won’t be doing anything special. As some of you know I do not have any family. Before you start, DON’T FEEL SORRY FOR ME! That’s not why I am bring this up. Yes, I am sure part of the day I will reflect back on being with my loved ones, eating off my Mom’s fancy china, and my Dad’s afternoon nap on his green lazy boy with the newspaper over his face. The smell of that turkey roasting, and the anticipation of the arrival of our loved ones. I do miss days gone by, but they are never coming back. Wallowing in your past can be a miserable place to get stuck in. Trust me, I know.
A couple of years ago when I was at my highest weight and bing eating, I wallowed in self pity over this. Before I go further, I did get an invite to go to a friends home and even spend the night, but declined. I have a little dog to think about, and as wonderful and sweet and thoughtful the invite was, it does not help the longing I have in my heart to be loved and have family. I have come to terms with the fact that I do not have a family that loves me. I mean the kind of love that you know you are in the front burner of that person’s life. Not necessarily romantic love, but family love.
I use to seek desperately to be loved. I’d latch onto anyone who was nice to me, and have way to high expctations about what that friendship should be. And let’s be honest here, we all fail each other at some time or another, But When a friend let me down, I became the victim, and became devastated, and after that, the bitterness sets in. Bitterness is the worst place to get stuck in. To be totally honest here, I use to suck the life out of my friendships and scared a lot of people off. I didn’t see that at all until recently. The 12 steps of recovery has you take a deep look at your character flaws, and make peace with your transgressions. If you can be brave enough to dig deep, this can bring a peace to your life that you never experienced.
I’ll be OK, I am confident in the love my God has for me, (I am pretty sure I’m His favorite) and who knows, maybe someday I will have family. Maybe not the traditional kind, but family comes in many different packages. Either way, God’s has me in the palm of His hand. Meanwhile, I have some amazing friends who stuck by me in my ugliest moments, and have my back as well. I have several people who would drop, and run to me if I ever had a crisis.
My church has a program called “Manna”. Once a month they give a box of food to people who are struggling financially. It is humbling to admit it, but I am one of the people they feed. I have been terribly hard on my church and the leadership. I complain about how I dislike the concert style worship. I feel left out a lot and wonder if the paster even knows my name. But I have to own my part, I rarely attend. People can’t get to know you if you are not there. But today, when I went to get my box of food, they asked me if I wanted a ham or turkey. I choose the ham. I can live an entire month off one ham. On the way there, I started to cry uncontrollably. I have no idea why exactly. Maybe because in-spite of my whining, and mishap attendance, they give. That is such a perfect example of God’s love for us. We complain when He does not run to our aid when we think He should. But ALWAYS, he gives, just in time. I don’t want to leave my church because it is the only link I have left to family. There are a handful of folks I have known since I was a child. And that is the church I got married in, and the funerals for my parents and husband was there. It has been my anchor. I weep when I write about this kind of love. I get so much more than I deserve. We all do.
My favorite quote is by Brennan Manning;
God loves us as we are; not as we should be, because we are never as we should be.