Celebrating Thanksgiving


Every year typically encompasses a few defining moments but the past 11 months have contained numerous world-changing, paradigm-shifting developments that are unimaginable; we’re not in an exceeding simulation that’s running every possible scenario without delay.

But there’s no time to be wearied: With a scourge still raging, waves of social change swelling around the globe, and numerous catastrophes that are happening in different countries, there is still yet one month left to complete the whole history of 2020.

Celebrating Thanksgiving 2020 will be a far cry from the past few years. Many of us have weathered many faces of difficulties, but being grateful this year, especially amidst a pandemic, may not be easy. Think of what to be grateful for, despite all the mishaps that have happened in the past few months. Many people have suffered great losses because of the pandemic. COVID-19 is not the only onslaught that we have had this year. Last December 2019, Australia faced a devastating wildfire season that burned 47 million acres, displaced thousands of people, and killed at least 34 people. In Beirut, a massive explosion on Aug. 4 killed 190 people. In the middle of August, deadly wildfires erupted from California to Washington state and burned millions of acres, displacing thousands of people. The Philippines was recently stricken by devastating calamities, which caused starvation and massive floods that submerged houses and caused deaths. Those people who are in this situation may be on the brink of losing hope. These experiences for this year are emblematic of life, wherein surviving is our biggest blessing. 

How can we be thankful for all these adversities that are happening around us? In the midst of these challenges we encounter, there are still many things that we can be thankful for. If you are still breathing at this moment, that can be your greatest blessing. Being simply grateful for being alive is the best way to motivate oneself to embrace and enjoy each day of our life. Irrespective of the circumstances we find ourselves in, we must see things to be grateful for, even the mundane things of life. That is how we draw the flow of positive energy our way and receive the good things in life.

The Harvard Medical School provides more detail, writing that gratitude is: “a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives. As a result, gratitude also helps people connect to something larger than themselves as individuals–whether to other people, nature, or a higher power.” 

Gratitude can be the greatest way to appreciate what we already have, rather than thinking of what we need to achieve to be happy. It can help us refocus our minds to be more appreciative of our lives and help us build healthy and thriving people. Being thankful is an excellent springboard to discovering the surge of beautiful hearts in our community and society. The year 2020 is survival; we should set aside complaining and start being grateful and be responsible for what we have. May we celebrate Thanksgiving every day of our life.

Rosemarie D. Embile
Susupe, Saipan

Rosemarie D. Embile
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