Holiday Is Family Time

November 24, 2013

Family means everything, especially during the holiday season. It is a time for families to come together, share in the joys and heartache of the year gone by and give gratitude for each other. So what to do if you find yourself without your family, in a distant land, feeling alone? In my life I have had the blessed opportunity of learning to redefine the meaning of family. Join me this holiday season in not only being closer to your loved ones but also accepting and adopting the others around you. Every Thanksgiving for 15 years now, I have been the hostess. Thanksgiving happens to be my favorite holiday of the year. No, it has nothing to do with its historical relevance, as I was born on a Native American reservation, so this obviously would not be the case. However, I love Thanksgiving, because it is a showcase of family, food, and gratitude. These are my three priorities in life. This Thanksgiving, I find myself without my children, travel plans gone awry and with no guest list or family to celebrate.The very notion while I write this is disturbing and then I exhale.I realize I have family, although, they may not be blood relatives, throughout the years both good and bad, my family of friends have been there for me. Living in a foreign country is not always easy, so we adapt. We make our family from the supportive network of close friends. My friends here in Panama are extra special to me. When one of us has an emergency, a disaster, or good news, we call each other instantly. We cry, we celebrate and we play together. We even fight. I remember not speaking to my best friend for almost a year once, but just like a blood family, we make up and love each other unconditionally. This Thanksgiving I am more grateful than ever. I have teenage children who are not going to be with me, but have family nearby and have grown into the most amazing young adults any mother could dream of. For this I am thankful. I have friends who are my family to celebrate with in Panama and for this I am grateful. I have a steadily growing tribe of a virtual family (I am talking about you!) who are finding their path along with me, for this I am uber thankful!! So this holiday season if you find yourself without family, or feeling alone with the family you have, reach out and adopt a friend, for they too may be alone. Find the gratitude in knowledge that we are all tied together; our tribe is large, for we are family.​"A family is like a tree, we branch out in different directions, but we all come from the same deep roots" share in the joys and heartache of the year gone by and give gratitude for each other. So what to do if you find yourself without your family, in a distant land, feeling alone? In my life I have had the blessed opportunity of learning to redefine the meaning of family. Join me this holiday season in not only being closer to your loved ones but accepting and adopting the others around you. 
Every Thanksgiving for 15 years now, I have been the hostess. Thanksgiving happens to be my favorite holiday of the year. No, it has nothing to do with it's historical relevance, as I was born on a Native American reservation, so this obviously wou ld not be the case. However, I love Thanksgiving, because it is a showcase of family, food, and gratitude. These are my three priorities in life. This Thanksgiving, I find myself without my children, travel plans gon awry and with no guest list or family to celebrate.
The very notion while I write this is disturbing and then I exhale.
I realize I have family, although, they may not be blood relatives, throughout the years both good and bad, my family of friends have been there for me. Living in a foreign country is not always easy, so we adapt. We make our family from the supportive network of close friends. My friends here in Panama are extra special to me. When one of us has an emergency, a disaster, or good news, we call each other instantly. We cry, we celebrate and we play together. We even fight. I remember not speaking to my best friend for almost a year once, but just like a blood family, we make up and love each other unconditionally. This Thanksgiving I am more grateful than ever. I have teenage children who are not going to be with me, but have family nearby and have grown into the most amazing young adults any mother could dream of. For this I am thankful. I have friends who are my family to celebrate with in Panama and for this I am grateful. I have a steadily growing tribe of a virtual family (I am talking about you!) who are finding their path along with me,  for this I am uber thankful!! So this holiday season if you find yourself without family, or feeling alone with the family you have, reach out and adopt a friend, for they too may be alone. Find the gratitude in knowledge that we are all tied together, our tribe is large, for we are family.
"A family is like a tree, we branch out in different directions, but we all come from the same deep roots"

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