By Stan Welch
Well, it’s time for the annual Thanksgiving column. I’ve written one of these each year for the last thirty years. The last few years it seems they have been tougher to write, and this year may be the toughest yet.
It’s human nature, or maybe just MY nature, to place too much weight on the social and political circumstances we are experiencing. The national and world political events of the last few years have set a rather dreary tone. But there is still much to be thankful for, so let’s get started.
I am thankful for the health I enjoy and that my family enjoys. We have our share of issues, but generally speaking, we are doing pretty well.
I am thankful for the life my mother led until her passing earlier this year, and for the love she gave to all of us. I am thankful for the peaceful nature of her passing, and for the outpouring of respect and love she received from her many friends and family. Thank you all.
I am thankful to still have the opportunity to be working in a profession I have practiced for thirty years, and which I still enjoy.
I am thankful that I live in the South, among the best and most congenial people on earth, black and white, rich and poor. Truly, nothing could be finer than to be in Carolina.
I am thankful that I grew up in a world where parents came in pairs and where they ruled the roost. I am thankful that I learned manners and to be respectful of others. I am thankful that the future generations of our family have been taught the same things.
I am thankful that I can be sure that whichever nephew, son or niece it is, and no matter what the situation, they will conduct themselves as ladies or gentlemen and will bring honor to our family.
I am thankful for my son, as aggravating as he can be. He reminds me that the future remains to be shaped by him and the others of his generation, and makes me hopeful, even in times that don’t.
I am thankful that I was born in a time when abortion was more than a convenience, more than an afterthought, more than a do –over for someone too lazy to behave as a responsible adult in the first place. I will be enormously thankful if we ever return to such a time.
I am thankful to live in a land where men and women are still willing to step forward and place themselves in harm’s way to defend and insure the freedoms that we all enjoy. I am thankful for the sacrifices of their families.
I am thankful for my beautiful bulldog, who showed up on my front porch several years ago, and who keeps me safe on my daily walk through the woods. Not once have I been attacked by a squirrel or a chipmunk. Not once. Her gentle ways are a source of amusement to me, and her love and affection are abundant.
I am thankful for the presence of a wonderful woman in my life, who keeps me straight most of the time, and who makes my life much fuller. I am thankful that her daughters accept my place in their lives. I am thankful for the presence of my family, sisters and brother, in-laws and nephews and nieces and such. We make a formidable clan.
I look forward to once again sitting down with them and offering our thanks to the giver of our gifts. I hope that each of you enjoys your day of Thanksgiving, surrounded by friends and family, and keenly aware of all that you have. I hope that each of you has enough to eat and someone to share it with.
I hope that each of you is blessed with a thankful heart and a joyful spirit. Safe journey to those who travel, and Happy Thanksgiving to everyone.
There, that wasn’t so hard, was it?