Thursday, November 22, 2012


If you've had a bone marrow transplant, on Thanksgiving you're probably like me, feeling grateful for our  donors, those incredibly generous people who gave us another chance at life. Not that we aren't grateful every day, but when we pause to give thanks for everyone we love and all the good things we have, our donors are right up there at the top of our list.

So a shout-out to Denise. Today on Thanksgiving I am thinking about you.

Our Thanksgiving was different this year. Instead of having it here as is our tradition, Joe and I went to Ben and Meg's in Stamford for a dinner bringing together parents and siblings from both sides of their families. I brought my mother's beautiful serving pieces, symbolically placing my mother (and my father) at the table. Katie was there too, via Skype in Spain.

Everything was wonderful, from the delicious food to the turkey-shaped butter to the festive mood centering around Ben and Meg's upcoming wedding. I enjoyed talking to everyone, including to Jane, Meghan's mother, my future machatunista (Yiddish for the mother of your child's spouse).

It is in many ways a difficult time of year. My mother died six years ago on Nov. 26. Right before Thanksgiving I had been in New York, and I was torn about whether to stay or to go home and have Thanksgiving with my family. My mother was fading fast, in and out of consciousness and unable to get out of bed, so it would have meant sitting in her  room with my aunt and my cousin.

She told me she wanted me to go home, so I did. After she died I thought I would never stop crying, of course about her death but also from thinking I should have been there for Thanksgiving. My cousin Joanne told me that I had given my mother the best gift possible by complying with her wishes and allowing her to think of me at home with my kids.

I don't have regrets anymore, just good memories and the feeling that they are still here. So I am thankful for that too.

1 comment:

PJ said...

I wish I knew my donor. I'm glad your Thanksgiving was so nice.