I don’t know how to describe this year. I keep trying to find words and coming up just short of unintelligible emo lyrics croaked over a wailing guitar. I realize that after the upheaval of 2007, this is saying a lot, but we’re nearing the end of our most challenging year as a family to date. It seems that every week since July, there has been some new circumstance beyond our control, and we’re currently dealing with some things we never would have imagined having to face. It all compresses on our mindspace, pulls us thin.
And yet, despite huge losses, we haven’t gone without. Even in the midst of betrayal, injustice, and good old-fashioned misfortune, we have always had enough food and love to go around. I keep trying to weave our circumstances into the cosmic net of suffering, but when I take a step back, all my raveling ends connect to the simplest reality: plenty. Every fall from security this year has landed us in unexpected provision, and somehow, impossibly, we have always had plenty of what we truly need.
That’s what we opened our house up to celebrate last weekend. A group of friends who have been like family to us, who continue to overfill us with companionship and kindness. A house large enough to host them, to invite the sprawl of Thanksgiving in to linger. An enormous turkey which had the whole supermarket talking and barely fit in our oven. Side dishes and laughter and everyone at the grown-up table and Cheers! in an overflowing circle. Plenty.
I’m especially thankful this year for impossible provision, for these chances to re-learn the whisper of miracle, for far-flung hopes, for the beautiful souls buoying us, and for hunky Italian poultry named Luigi (naturally). What are you celebrating this year?