I needed a few days off after Thanksgiving. A few days off from doing everyone’s bidding, making all the decisions and doing all the planning.
Thanksgiving was supposed to be stress free. Dinner would be at my father’s house. My sister-in-law tells me weeks before the holiday that she will handle everything if I would just pick up her, my brother and their daughter.I hope every year that this will be true, but past years have shown me this is not how it will go.
She tells me she will call my father and make all the arrangements. She calls and makes sure it is okay for us to all come over. There will only be six of us including my father. He is thrilled we will all be coming over.
As Thanksgiving approaches I am asked to bring dessert and paper plates. That’s all, she promises, she will do the rest. The day before she calls and says she forgot about drinks, could I get those, too? Oh, wait, silverware and glasses? And chairs? And could she borrow a few bucks to buy the charcoal so they can smoke the turkey?
I run over the money. Two days to go. The night before Thanksgiving she calls and tells me she forgot to buy lighter fluid and didn’t know if she could find any at the store across the street (they don’t have a car); could I come over and pick up the turkey to cook it? I told her I was going to punch her in the face. She thought I was kidding. I didn’t want to have a turkeyless thanksgiving so I agreed to get the turkey if she couldn’t find fluid. I was out with my Beatles buddy seeing a band so I would have to go after to get the turkey. Thankfully, she was able to get fluid.
The next morning, Thanksgiving Day, she calls to see if I can drop something off she needs for the turkey, I run up to the store and over to her house. I go back home and have to go back to pick them up in two hours. Two hours later I pick them up and drop them off at my fathers. I go home and pick up my husband and all the things I am bringing; wine, pies, chairs, cranberry sauce, plates, silverware, pop and beer.
Every question is left up to me. When should we eat? Can we all fit at the table? Is my father’s oven working? And each time a question involves my father it is up to me to get the answer.
Another thankful moment was when my husband offered to go pick my brother up from work. I was supposed to go get him, but by this point was getting very frazzled. I still had to drive them all home. Everyone is drinking and having a good time while I am stressed to the limit.
My brother and sister-in-law leave my dad a bit of food and take all the rest of the leftovers.
On the drive home my sister-in-law tells me this was such a relaxing day. I almost scream. All I want is to go home and forget the whole day happened and be thankful it is over. When we get to their house they are shocked I don’t want to stay. I finally get to go home.
The next few days my husband was so thoughtful. He made dinner, cleaned up the kitchen and let me just sit. He made all the decisions and just let me relax. I napped. I watched Star Trek DS9 with him. No pressure. I just got to relax.
So, I took a few days off for me. No phone calls, no texts, only chatting briefly with my Beatles buddy. It was a nice few days and I am thankful for them.