Happy Thanksgiving, my little pumpkin pies! I hope you are all either stuffing your faces with all the deliciousness the holiday has to offer, or sitting around with your most loved ones, or doing something Thanksgiving-y. Volunteering. Sports-watching, or something. I don’t know, what do normal people do today?
I don’t Thanksgiving. Well, that’s misleading. I totally give THANKS, I just don’t do it with my FAMILY. I go home for Christmas (well, usually, that’s still to-be-decided around here this year) and it seems like a colossal waste of gas to go home two months in a row. Also, my family doesn’t do much for Thanksgiving. We do the same exact thing at Christmas, only there are gifts. So I choose Christmas. This year, Dad’s all jazzed because they’re eating the turkeys HE SLAUGHTERED HIS VERY OWN SELF and the last time I talked to him he was all “AMY AMY THEY ARE THAWING!!!” All hail the conquering hero! Also, Amy’s Brother and The Nephew might put in an appearance at the Thanksgiving table and everyone is all excited about that. (My brother also doesn’t believe in Thanksgiving. He usually sleeps through it.)
I will be working today because of ALL THE HOLIDAY PAY and also so my coworkers can spend the holiday with their families. I don’t mind. What else was I going to do, stay home and eat my TV dinner? (YES, I bought a turkey TV dinner, I’m not buying a whole turkey. Who’d eat it, the cat? There’s no way I can eat a whole turkey. I AM ONLY ONE PERSON.) Also, Thanksgiving is usually very slow at work. People are too busy digesting to bother the answering service, so that’s nice. I will be sitting at the supervisor’s desk and hopefully mentally plotting future blog posts or something, I don’t know. Something.
ANYWAY, it is THANKSGIVING, so you know what that means! GIVING ALL THE THANKS. I was thinking earlier, this has kind of been a really tough year. Not just for me, but for a lot of my loved ones. I think we’re all looking forward to putting 2012 in our rearviews and soldiering onto 2013. Only a little over a month left, chickadees. Also, I have to apologize, I assume the utter sucktacularness of 2012 has been my fault, because my 2011 was SO AMAZING I sucked all the goodness out of the upcoming year for everyone else so of course 2012 sucked because there was no goodness left. ALL MY FAULT. I send my most abject apologies for that. I’ll try not to bogart the goodness anymore, that’s totally rude of me. What an asshole I am.
BUT! Even though this year has really had its sucky pit-of-despair moments, there is a lot of thankfulness to be given. I’m not at all chipper-cheerful lady, but there is always a silver lining in almost everything. ALMOST everything. Not quite everything. I can think of a few things where there’s no silver lining at all. But this is THANKSGIVING and let’s not even talk about that right now.
WITHOUT FURTHER ADO!
THINGS I AM THANKFUL FOR (AKA WHAT SEEMS TO HAVE BECOME MY ANNUAL SQUISHY THANKSGIVING POST)
- My friends. I would not be where I am today without my friends,both the ones I can real-life smoosh and those of you that live in my computer. I have the best friends in the entire world. They send me tweets and email and texts and mail; they make me laugh and cry every day; they teach me new things; some of them OFFERED ME REAL-LIFE MONEY over the past four months, when they didn’t even have that much to spare; they are patient with how weird I can be; they are wonderful and funny and intelligent and I am the luckiest woman alive. Honestly, I have to wonder if I went so long without people because whoever’s pulling the strings in the world knew I wasn’t ready for these people until I got to the point in my life I’d be able to appreciate them, be the friend they deserved, and be ready to have them in my life. I’m not going to name them all; that’s poor form, and if you leave someone out, you hurt someone’s feelings. No feelings-hurting on Thanksgiving. Here’s the thing. If you’re my person, I tell you I love you. Often and repeatedly. Probably to the point where you’re like, “GAH AMY YOU ARE A SAPPY SAP.” So you know this paragraph is about you. I love you. Thank you for keeping me sane. Thank you for GETTING me. I owe absolutely everything good I have to you and would be nothing without you and couldn’t do this without you. You, you, you. Full stop.
- Being let go from my job.I KNOW. This is not a normal thing that a person is thankful for. But as hard as I have to work to make ends meet right now, as stressed as I am, as worried as I am about making ends meet, as tired I am get – I never, ever, EVER have to go back to that place again. I never have to work with those people again. I never have to do another tax season again. I never have to sit in my car mentally psyching myself up to go back in by promising myself it’ll be Friday in only 4 more days, please don’t cry, Amy, only four more days. I NEVER HAVE TO DO THAT AGAIN. The relief in that feeling – it’s honestly immeasurable. When the first feeling you get when you get called into the conference room and are fired is not panic, but relief? You were at the wrong job. And it is not a curse, but a blessing. Also, had I not been out of that job, I never would have gotten the theater reviewing job, and the theater reviewing job is one of the best things in my life right now. So, old job, thank you. Thank you for letting me go. I only hope that someday, one of you sees me, and sees how happy I am to not be there, and that INFURATES you. (FINE. I’m thankful, doesn’t mean I’m not bitter at the way it was handled. I’m not a saint.)
- Having my part-time job to fall back on.Does it exhaust me? Do callers yell at me? Am I working weird crazy hours? Yes yes yes. But that job saved my life, sanity, and apartment. If not for that job, and how willing they’ve been since July to work with me (and work around any of my conflicts) and give me whatever hours I want/need, pretty much – I’d have had to move home with my parents, or borrow a ton of money from them, or maybe both. I’ve been able to retain my dignity because of that job. I’ve been able to pay my bills. I’ve been able to pay (MOST IMPORTANTLY!) my internet bill, because then how would I BLOG, you guys??? No, but seriously, if I ever find something else? That place is SO getting a huge floral arrangement delivered. (Also, thank you, coworkers. You make me laugh and are all kinds of awesome. Thank you for that.)
- My family. My family loves me even though I am insane and even though they don’t agree with…well…most of what I do or say. But they love me anyway. That’s nice, right? That there are people that love you no matter what? My dad makes me laugh harder than anyone; The Nephew is my absolute sunshine. I’m a lucky woman. I am very loved.
- Having somewhere to live, enough food, a car, and the cat. These are basic things, but listen, a lot of people don’t HAVE these basic things. I am thankful for them. I am thankful for my teeny-tiny place that is just the right size for an Amy on her own, and I am thankful I have enough food that I don’t go to bed hungry (except when I eat at weird hours, but that’s no one’s fault but my own, it’s not like I’m STARVING), and I’m thankful for a car that goes when I need it to and stops when I need it to (and thankful for a father who bought it for me, because there’s no way in hell I could afford a car, or even the payments for a car, on my own), and I’m thankful that I have the world’s most amazing wonderful furry purry Dumbcat, who makes me laugh and cuddles me when I’m sad and has been just the best pet anyone could ever ask for over the past…shit, decade. Almost a decade with my little monster! Aw, yay!
- Having amazing things happen this year, like the book and the theater gig. For all the weird upheaval and turmoil this year, it really has been an amazing year. I WROTE A BOOK. Which people seemed to enjoy, even! And it’s so damn PRETTY! It still makes me swoony, even three months later. I assume it will make me swoony YEARS later. And I am now getting PAID to write THEATER reviews. A newspaper is letting me see shows for free, then paying me to talk about what I thought of them and PUBLISHING them. In NEWSPRINT. These two things are just about the best, I can’t even lie. I might be kind of technically unemployed and tired and frazzly, but I’m a published author who writes for a newspaper. Sometimes I say that to myself and I giggle. And sometimes I say that to myself and I get tears.
- Having theater in my life. Theater has saved my life since I was thirteen years old; it continues to do so. Theater brings such beautiful things into my life, often when I need them the most. Without it, life would be a dark void. Without even the slightest exaggeration. I am thankful for every single theater person that’s ever come into my life, ever production I’ve ever worked on, every theater group that’s ever embraced me and accepted me.
- Where I live. I went a very long time living in places that just didn’t seem like home. Now I live somewhere that I love so, so passionately I can’t imagine living anywhere else, ever. It’s nice to not be looking over your shoulder for the next big thing so you can just live in the now, be happy where you are, put down roots. It’s a very nice feeling. A very settled one. I’ll never leave the Capital District. Well, I shouldn’t say never. Someday I’ll die, after all, and my grave isn’t here.
- My sense of humor. I’ve been through some shit in my day, my little cranberries. However, for the most part, I’ve kept laughing. Even at things that were SO INAPPROPRIATE. I think it’s how I’ve kept my sanity. I’m a cat; I land on my feet. I might break a bone or two, but I land on my feet. And I land on my feet LAUGHING.
- My (mostly) intact health and the health of my loved ones.I’m not the healthiest person in the world – I take a billion pills a day to ensure my continued not-dying – but I very seldom get colds, stomach bugs, and things of that nature, and I’ve only been to the ER four times in my life (once I was too little for it to count and once it was because it was Christmas and I forgot my pills four hours away and my dad was all “WE WILL GET SOME AT THE ER.”) My loved ones are, for the most parts, quite healthy as well. I am thankful for this. I am SO thankful for this. (Mostly because I’m a terrible sick person and I whine a lot.)
- Modern technology. My phone and my laptop allow me to keep in touch with my loved ones at speeds heretofore unknown; I can write things that people read almost immediately; I can see videos of The Nephew minutes after he’s done the thing; I can read what people are thinking about things from around the world as they happen. I know Andreas thinks we’ve all been cheated due to lack of flying cars, but I’m pretty down with this future, yo. Young-Amy would have LOVED this shit. (Young-Amy, however, would never have said “shit” on the interwebs.)
- My big fat mostly awesome brain.For all of its quirks (MAYBE WE COULD STOP OBSESSING OVER NONSENSE ONCE AND A WHILE, AMY’S BRAIN!!!), I have an amazing brain. It’s smart, it retains knowledge, it makes weird arcane connections, it comes up with original ideas, it’s a quick learner, it loves words, it’s funny as hell. I like my brain a lot. Thanks, science, this brain was a good choice for me. Now, can we get it to stop the obsessery and also the worrying incessantly over shit? Thanks a billion.
- The blog. This blog has been…well, don’t even get me started. When I started with this thing, I had no idea what would happen. What a monster it would become. What it would bring into my life: people, opportunities, laughter, love. I just thought, “Eh, this might be fun.” AND IT WAS. But it was also so much more. I am thankful for the blog, and for all of you for reading it, and reading all the other places my random things go up all over the internet. Without someone to read what we write, well, writing wouldn’t be all that much fun, now would it? Nope. Not at all.
Now I’m going to eat some turkey for lunch and a little teeny bit of pie (it’s not Thanksgiving without pie, yo) and listen to Arlo tell me about the shovels and rakes and implements of destruction, as I do every year, and then go off to work to make some money. Thankfully. Because I’m one hell of a lucky woman.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone. I hope your day is utterly stuffed with love and family and food and all good things; you deserve nothing but the best.