As Thanksgiving Day approaches, I can’t help but think about what this holiday has meant to me.
Aside from spending time with family, friends, and giving thanks when I was younger, I never gave much attention to the day. When I was in high school, Thanksgiving marked the beginning of winter sports, and for me, that only meant one thing. Basketball tryouts!
Years passed, and as an upperclassman, I didn’t worry too much about making the team. My only goal was to show the coaching staff how much I had improved and to not be the guy barfing his guts out because I ate too much Thanksgiving dinner.
Once I got to college, forget about spending this holiday with your immediate family. The Thanksgiving tradition shifted to early morning workouts, extra practices, and extensive film sessions. Plus, if your family wasn’t a local, you most likely ate Thanksgiving dinner at your coach’s house, a teammate’s house, and sometimes even alone.
You blink, and just like that, you’re boarding a bus and/or catching a flight for an upcoming Holiday Tournament.
A Tradition Renewed
Once you hit your twenties, this is where you really start to appreciate Thanksgiving traditions.
The festivities begin when out of town family arrives (or you travel to them). You reconnect with aunts, uncles, and cousins you haven’t seen in years. But deep down inside, you know it’s just a matter of time before something happens. I mean, let’s be real what’s a family holiday without some kind of drama. By mid-week, the adults are tranquilized with beer, wine, and whiskey; while the young indulge in Pre-Thanksgiving Day parties!
Trust me when I tell you, there’s nothing like enjoying city nightlife with family and friends the night before Thanksgiving. Morning recaps are full of the juvenile debauchery from the night before, random banter turns into trash talk, and before you know it, you find yourself in the middle of a Family Turkey Bowl. Once playtime is over, the rest of the day is filled with love, fun, food, and laughter!
All Grown Up
The Pre-Thanksgiving parties turn into Friendsgiving, and as you look forward to catching up with old friends, the thrill of having a few days off from work seems way overdue. Enjoying a glass of wine replaces the urge for a night out on the town, and you turn to retail therapy for comfort, only to realize you have now become a part of the Black Friday madness. Before you know it, you’re counting down the days until Christmas, figuring out gifts, and making last-minute travel plans for New Year’s Eve. You take a minute to catch your breath, and then it kicks in, where did the time go?