You Are Invited to Our Table

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wishing you a day of gratitude that brings joy into your heartπŸ™πŸ˜ŠπŸ’—

As much as this is a day full of giving thanks I had a situation yesterday that is bringing new perspective to how some people may be experiencing this day.

Two nights ago I woke up in pain.  I tossed and turned for a while, growing frustrated that I was going on a week of enduring the pain from my new obturator.  Eventually I got up and did something I have never done before, I took my obturator out for the night to relieve the pain.  It worked... but by morning my mouth was so inflamed from the irritation of this past week, I couldn't get my obturator in.  

I tried and tried. 

And failed and failed.  

The reality of not getting it in hit me - I will not be able to speak articulately or eat or drink with ease until I get it back in with my dentist in Boston next week. Oh yeah, and I can't even pick up the phone to call Stephen - or any doctors - because they won't be able to understand me.  

Between the physical pain of trying to get it in and the mental energy of preparing myself to have to go for days without my obturator I finally surrendered trying to figure it out myself and reached out and ask for help.  I texted with Stephen and my family.

I thankfully got in to see a dear family friend who worked with me for a couple of hours and eventually was able to get it back in.

I left with tears of gratitude and joy.

Yes, I am thankful I get to sit around the table and speak and eat with my family today.  Yet as I lay in bed last night I realized that there are other people whose pains will not be gone today.

Maybe it's the first Thanksgiving without a loved one or it's the first holiday without a drink.  Maybe it's the day after surgery or a loved one is serving overseas. Maybe you are still in the whirlwind of a diagnosis or you learned the adoption isn't going to work out.  Maybe it's your first holiday after the divorce or you are celebrating today knowing this may be your last Thanksgiving with a loved one.

Whatever your story may be, I just wanted to invite you all to come and gather around the table and let you know there is a seat for you here.  At this Thanksgiving table is where experiencing pain and giving thanks can coexist.  And if today you are having trouble giving thanks, we are here beside you because it's okay to be in that place, even on Thanksgiving.

No matter your story, I invite you to join me to...

Pause. Breathe. Pray.

May we close our eyes and picture all of us, near and far, who are seated at this table.  May we patiently persevere during this time.  May our strength of heart and mind grow our endurance.  May our faith be bigger than our fear. And on this day of Thanksgiving, may we choose to seek what we have to be grateful for so we may experience joy (even a blip) in our hearts today.

With love, gratitude and hope,

Shawn

"Thanks to the God of comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God." - 2 Corinthians 1:3-4