Last night was the first time I celebrated Thanksgiving in three years. Usually I spend this time escaping the US and visiting new places. Last year I was in Estonia, and one of my best friends made me a feast of yummy food as well as provided me with a week of fun and adventure. The year before that I was graduating from the University of Edinburgh and enjoying my time in Scotland with my mom and sister. I spent the holiday meant to be all about giving thanks in places and with people that make me feel really thankful.
This year I was lucky enough to have my mom and brother visiting me in Scotland for Thanksgiving. My brother has never been here, so I had an amazing time showing him around all of my favorite places, and going to see things that I had never seen before. I decided that this year I would celebrate Thanksgiving with all of the new friends that I made. Most of them had never celebrated Thanksgiving before, and I had never made a complete dinner by myself, so I decided that it was a good chance for my mom to meet my friends, and to actually use my little kitchen to create a meal.
For my first attempt at a Thanksgiving dinner, it could not have gone any better. I was about two hours later than I thought I would be in terms of serving dinner, but the turkeys looked good, the potatoes, green beans, and stuffing were incredible, and the gravy was able to be saved (thanks Errol), and even though I really did not have a chance to sit and hang out with everyone, given all the laughter I heard, I think that everyone had a good time. I was so glad that my friends got to meet my mom and my brother (I wish the wombmate could have been here) since they are some of my favorite people, and I am glad that my mom got to see that I am surrounded by an amazing group of people.
I know that Thanksgiving is a time for people to think about what they are thankful for, and this is going to sound really strange given that for the last two years I have been writing about how miserable CSUF made me, but I am really thankful for that horrible horrible program. If it was not for that program, I would not have applied for the program here, and would not be back in the one place in the world that I feel at home. If all of that stuff hadn’t have happened, I would be graduating in a few months, but I would be miserable. Being Scotland would not even be on my radar. I’d be depressed, alone, and unhappy for sure. While there are things I miss, okay, really just my family and a few of my friends that I consider family, I wouldn’t trade any of that for where I am now. I’m grateful that the shitshow of a program led me to a program that I love, a job that I enjoy, and people that I love to be around.