Showing Thanks in Different Ways


Alexander Raths

Thanksgiving celebration traditional dinner setting meal concept with copy space

     Many people use Thanksgiving as a chance to show gratitude for their families, hence the celebration with their closest relatives, however; some families are divided around the holidays which cause a lot of traveling from place to place. The unspoken truth about Thanksgiving is that sometimes the holidays can be a hard time for kids and parents in difficult circumstances.

     Divorced parents around the holiday can sometimes mess with the holiday spirit and switching back and forth from house to house can cause a strain on the family, but for senior Nathan Sanchez, that is far from the truth. The night before Thanksgiving, he celebrates Thanksgiving with his mom, stepdad, and brothers as they prepare their own Thanksgiving dinner with turkey, potatoes, and desserts. Thanksgiving Day, Nathan celebrates by driving twenty five minutes to his dad and stepmom’s house where they have a Thanksgiving dinner with that side of the family. Later that night, Nathan drives five minutes from his dad’s house to their step dad’s parents’ house to eat more Thanksgiving food: turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes, green casserole, and pumpkin pie. But the night isn’t over as Nathan travels over to his aunt’s house to celebrate by eating some of his favorite desserts: cookies, banana bread, french silk pie, and brownies. Nathan explains his mindset behind the decision, “I live with my mom so it’s easier to celebrate the day before. On Thanksgiving Day, I go celebrate with my dad because I need to see his side of the family. Later that night I drive over to my stepdad’s grandparent’s house because my grandparents prepare a Thanksgiving dinner for our family. Then my aunt’s house is just a yearly tradition”. 

     Some would say this is very stressful, but to him this is normal. Many wonder, why he does this every year and if it bothers him. Well, his answer is the complete opposite, according to Nathan, “It’s fun. A lot is going on, and I get to see all sides of the family, hang out, and then obviously eat, so it’s cool”. 

     While some teenagers struggle with their holidays being separated, Nathan explains the positives about divided holidays, “You get to see a lot more family and you are able to eat a lot more food. You share the new things in your life and it’s good to talk with both sides of the family”. Even though Nathan comes across some challenges, he appreciates his family’s effort in making the holidays perfect. 

     Another senior, Elyse McLaughlin explains, “Even though having separated parents during the holidays may be tough, it taught me to be thankful that I have a family and I am able to see them.” She suggests to create an equally divided schedule where you can see both sides of the family the same amount. 

     Whether your Thanksgiving consists of traveling from house to house and spending time with different families or celebrating at one house with the same family the entire night, what’s really important is the overall theme of enjoying time with the ones you don’t get to see every moment. Always remember to give thanks.