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Anybody out there thinking of skipping Thanksgiving this year? Maybe Christmas, too, while you’re at it? Holidays can be tough for some of us. {OK, a lot of us.} So, just thought I’d ask…

I consider skipping Thanksgiving and Christmas every year, myself…for reasons I can’t always explain. {Mainly because I avoid exploring them…also for reasons I can’t explain.} But because I know I can’t change what I refuse to look at, I search for what hides beneath my avoidance…and the ACTS Journal helps me do that.

Only you can discover what lies beneath your patterns of avoidance or desire to skip holidays. For me, I’ve discovered that my reasons seem to congregate around three painful recognitions. First and foremost, Thanksgiving was my most-loved holiday as a child. Secondly, it was my most-treasured family tradition as a young wife and mother, and memories of both fill me with “homesickness” for people and places no longer a part of my life, which brings me to my third discovery. Whether our thoughts take us back to our best holiday memories or our worst, the stab of longing for one can hurt just as much as the heartbreak of the other. And that’s why I sometimes wish I could just skip them altogether.

I’ve tried it, though, and it doesn’t work, and that’s why I’m writing about it. A week before the much-loved-holiday-I-sometimes-wish-I-could-skip, I’ve decided to celebrate it instead, and I hope you’ll choose to do the same, regardless of whether you’re single or married, with family or with friends, or even completely alone. Because, you know what? It’s delusional and depressing to pretend that we can erase significant life events.

Nonetheless, a few years ago on Thanksgiving, I decided to watch non-stop videos… all day long. I, really and truly, thought I could pretend it away, but by the end of my movie marathon, I was completely miserable and knew I would NEVER try that again.

The tendency is still there, though. Year after year, I get a little delusional right about now. Then at the last minute, it hits me. Wait a minute. I LOVE Thanksgiving! Always have, always will…and I refuse to miss such a perfect occasion for gathering with friends and family to be thankful together and make new memories of a much-loved holiday.

The UnbridledACTS family joins me in wishing each and every one of you the kind of Thanksgiving your heart longs for, so that you never again consider the crazy notion of trying to skip the treasures and traditions of gathering with loved ones to give thanks.