Why I Love Thanksgiving // That Empty Christmas Feeling

It’s difficult to find people whose favorite holiday is Thanksgiving. Most people seem to really hate Thanksgiving, but I think it’s really great.

Christmas was my favorite holiday as a child. In school essays, I would write that I loved Christmas not for the presents, but for the people, because I was such a sweet kid knew that if I said it was for the presents, I would appear as selfish and greedy to my teachers.

But to be honest, Christmas has always left me unsatisfied and underwhelmed, no matter what I got or wanted or not. And I think it is because the culmination of Christmas, the shop decorations, TV movie specials, baking, cocoa, advent calendars and that slow growing pile of presents beneath the tree all ends on the twenty-fifth, and then it’s done.

The holidays are over in less than an hour. It means that fall is finished, and everyone has to go back to work and school, and the winter wonderland is shut down for another year.

It’s a big, cold drop.

But, if you rewind and take the holidays in from Thanksgiving, you end up with so much more. Thanksgiving is the beginning. Thanksgiving is welcoming the holidays with open arms, taking out sweaters and rain boots, putting on hats and gloves and eating all the canned soup you can. It’s the beginning of the best part of the year, the end of the year, and that is why I love it. It’s great!

And funnily enough, though I never believed it would be, gone is the lust I once had for those piles of presents, and in its stead is complete satisfaction with just having a break. Thanksgiving is the perfect break. It is the sabbath of the year.

It is four days of sleep-in, pajama-wearing, stay-at-home-and-watch-TV-all-day laziness.

At least for my family, it is. I know that for some people, the holidays are stressful, and that sucks.
This year, I set my eyes on Thanksgiving on the first day of October, so that when the fourth Thursday comes and goes in November, I know there is still something to look forward to. Not to putting my sight solely on Christmas helps it all last a little longer. Instead of being the one best part of the holidays, Christmas becomes the next part. You’re not supposed to put all your eggs in one basket, and that’s what people do with Christmas. They forget about Thanksgiving, even though it’s the perfect holiday.

Thank you, Thanksgiving, and thank you America.

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