The problem I have with Thanksgiving 2012.

I was standing in the aisle of the store yesterday and overheard a conversation of young 20 something woman.

Ok…I may have been eavesdropping.

But, when someone who is wearing size 0 jeans has a cart full of processed, chocolate covered items….I kind of want to know what she is doing to keep that body.

She was complaining to whomever was on the other end of the line about having to go to 2 different people’s houses for Thanksgiving. How her entire day was going to be full of family and eating.

I’m also reading lots of posts on Facebook about how irritating its going to be to travel this holiday.  Or how stressed out someone is because they have to bake 9 million pies.  Or how frustrated they are because they are hosting the holiday and their aunt or cousin or distant relative decided to come after all.

It’s all relative (you know…family, cousins and such – ha) this Thanksgiving.

Actually…it’s not.

This holiday I’ll be spending it with my best boy.  Just him and I as I send Iz and Craig to family’s homes to enjoy in the standard fare of turkey, dressing, and all the fixin’s.  My boy has endured too many surgeries and the air is thick with colds and flu and the like for us to put him at risk.  Iz loves seeing her cousins and she needs this bit of normal for her.

There’s a good chance I’ll probably eat a bowl of cereal for my meals on the holiday…too tired to make something for myself and too hungry to wait for my best girl and the hubs to come home with all the leftover loot.

I love Thanksgiving.  I love everything about the holiday.  I’ve even gone as far as planning Friendsgiving – a day where we eat Thanksgiving dinner with friends – just so I get to eat the dang meal more than once.

But, this year, my Thanksgiving will be much more about the holiday then the food.

This year, I’ll truly give thanks.  I’ll give thanks for each blessing that has poured down on my family.  I’ll give thanks because what has been the most difficult and trying year of our lives to date…is finally wrapping up…and I have my sweet boy here despite all we have been through.

Many families this holiday won’t be able to say that.  Many of the lives that have entered mine will have an empty hole in their hearts that holds a place for their special little that is now looking down on them from Heaven.  Many families will wonder how in the world to give Thanks when they have endured some of life’s greatest heartaches.

I was depressed about the thought of me and Evan sitting at our house – alone – again – as Craig and Iz enjoyed the day.  But, I was reminded by a fellow Heart Mom who is doing the same thing with her family – her and her little enjoying the day on their own as the rest of her family partake in the festivities – that she is just so grateful that we have this “problem.”  The problem of getting to be at home with her heart baby while the rest of her brood is out….because her (and my) baby is still here.

Our problem – one that I now will rejoice in – is one I am truly thankful for this year.  I’ll say the prayer of Thanks over my bowl of Cheerios or peanut butter sandwich.

As much as I wish this Thanksgiving my boy was like a normal 10 month old – spreading mashed potatoes in his hair and throwing his sippy cup of milk across the room – I will thank God and the holiday gods for my boy who still “eats” from a tube, has a face that is lopsided, and whose heart isn’t whole.

I only hope and pray that you face “problems” as great as mine this year.  I pray that when you stress over the menu, contemplate place settings, suffer through travels – that you are blessed with great “problems” like mine – and find ways to give Thanks.

Happy Thanksgiving, friends.



  1. Amen!! We are spending Thanksgiving at home also. Camden is only 2 1/2 weeks post-op and we can’t take any risks by exposing him. I keep telling myself next year will be better! 🙂

  2. Nicole Labadie says:

    My heat breaks for you. I know the feeling. I’ve had my almost 2 year old in and out of the hospital all year. I am not a heart mom but I can tell you I pray for every single heart mom in the world. I have three new heart moms within the last two years in my family. Two babies with HLHS and one with TOF. I myself am sick too. I can tell you I relate to how you see everyone is complaining about menus and their families. I have no family other than my husband and child. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

    Happy Thanksgiving!

    • I’ll pray for you, Nicole. It sounds like you have had your share of the hospital burden…which is very hard on the soul.

      I’m so glad you have your husband and child…and now you have us…all the heart moms you pray for.

      Lots of love on Turkey Day to you and your family!