Today’s column is being written on Thanksgiving Day. My calls are checking in with the relatives and friends. Food is stacked in the frig waiting to be called to the table. My family is taking a walk. Millie has a sore foot, so she and I are watching the Westminster Dog Show. Just about as exciting as it can get.
Nolan likes to mosey over to the music toy. He spins a wheel and music begins to play. He then stands bouncing to the music. Not quite like the Thanksgivings I remember when the Johnson family gathered on Neff Road. But music was there just the same. Like many families from Darke County, we grew up with music. For generations, our family had gathered around the piano to sing. The men sang just as powerfully as did the women, perhaps because there were fewer of them. Mom pounded out carols on the piano. As a small child I remember looking at each adult loving that they all sang. They didn’t just sing! They harmonized. I think perhaps these were some of the best times of my growing up. Men who seemed toughed from working in the fields and wielding heavy loads became transformed when they sang with their beautiful voices.
Instead of extended family. It is just our little family. Much too much food and a whole lot of overeating, but traditions are followed. Instead of my mother cooking and me making the best of it since I hate cooking, my son takes up the turkey and creates a feast. Traditions set for the babies who, too, will someday remember.
It is a time of being thankful. Of course, I’m thankful every day, so this is no biggie. I find that it is a time of being especially thankful for the people who have been in my life. It is a day of missing. Many of those who lived in the area of Neff Road passed just this last week. A time of mourning overshadows this time of family. Still the joy of having those people in our lives and having shared wonderful memories makes one even more thankful for the past and grateful for the each moment of the present.
Thanksgiving doesn’t just come one day and leave the next. Thanks should be a part of every day. For time, it does pass quickly.
Pam Drake is a former resident of Darke County and is the author of Neff Road and A Grandparents Voice blog. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Viewpoints expressed in these opinion pieces are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.