Thanksgiving, Cancelled?

How I’m learning gratitude…

Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

In the States, Thanksgiving is the kick-off (arguably) of the Holiday season, the place where we begin the season of gratitude and giving, although many of the retailers would like you to think of this as the “first half” of the shopping season for Christmas…

So I was at the local grocers (here they are called Frys) with my 22 year old shopping after her shift at B&B (Bath and Body Works — the local chain of candles — already shifted from fall line to Christmas line) and as we passed the numerous christmas trees and holiday displays we came to the “protein section” (meat and cheeses) and the obligatory case of poultry was there with turkeys of various sizes and lineage were there and I commented on how we had purchased a smaller turkey a couple of weeks ago because my wife had heard a rumor that the turkeys might be in short supply (obviously not the case yet).

My daughter said she didn’t even think we were having thanksgiving this year, because of “things”.

And by things she means me and my trans “situation”. Because while I have been in therapy for my GD and integration issues (from suppressing and hiding my truth for all these years) my wife has been dealing with “trans-widow” issues (I’m sorry if that term is offensive to some, but it is the most accurate one I have found to describe the grief my wife feels at “losing” her husband. And no amount of me saying I’m the same person, or at least the one who knew him the best, is going to make up for that. The truth is we can’t support each other the way we need anymore, and I’m not sure if that will resolve over time or not. So we are looking at other paths, including the legal ones.) meaning grieving for the me I used to be.

So I told my daughter she needed to think about the things she was grateful for this year and focus on that. She said she thought she could do that.

And then I realized that I have SO MUCH to be thankful for this year — my truth!!!

Who I am becoming, and reconciling with my Inner Child (don’t worry, you’ll meet her soon!) and finding such a caring community here, and new friends (I’m looking at you KP_the_writer, and my dear readers!!!), professional listeners (my Ts — great ears!) and insurance that actually covers a lot of this process, a work place that is protected (I started talking to my HR folks this week about coming out — yay!!!) and I’m even thankful for all the times I fell on my face this year, or was scared because of what was happening, because ANYTHING IS BETTER than living afraid of who I am and thinking my life would be hidden away forever!!! OMG!!! So much to be grateful for!!!

And yes, thanksgiving is still on. Although I think my list may look different this year. And I will still put my “old name” on the list of things I’m thankful for. Because he did keep me safe all those years and he was a really nice and caring guy. And I have some “big shoes” to fill in the heart department (and the heal/heel department…lol!) but I feel like there is so much Love in my corner now, and I am psyched!!! So bring on those holidays and lets get to it!!!

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Jenny Starr✨

Jenny Starr✨

A transgender woman (she/they) learning her way in this beautiful life…queer, curious, thoughtful. I write poetry, LGBTQ and whatever else. Come away with me!