We made it through Thanksgiving. Not just any Thanksgiving, but the now infamous 2016 post-election Thanksgiving. Not only did we make it through, but we did it without one argument. To add to the great feat of surviving Thanksgiving 2016, lets also add the stress of being the designated sibling to take my 86 year old dementia-impaired mother who has extreme anxiety when leaving her farmhouse to a family gathering which was a 3 hour car ride, each way. A family gathering where only two admitted Trump voters were present, but we were admonished to NOT discuss politics. Did I mention that she doesn’t really know we are married or that her daughter is a lesbian? Oh yes, let’s just through that right on in the pot with the rest of the muck and stir it up. Can we sprinkle a helping of the 14 year old gender fluid kid with long bright red hair that was also in the car? When I say ‘car’, I mean subcompact: Wife #1 (me), Wife #2, Red-haired 14 year old and 86 year old who wasn’t sure of the identity of 14 year old kid or Wife #2 about 50% of the time. Thanksgiving 2016. Oi vey.
We made it. We endured by not making eye contact with said Trump voters in an attempt to not temp fate and the limit of my tolerance for stupidity. We made small talk and doted on the children, we stuffed ourselves silly with some seriously good collards, turkey with dressing and gravy, all the good stuff one would expect. We answered all the same questions from my mother over and over again and tried to not sound annoyed in doing so. Then the most amazing thing happened on the car ride home. When my mother was questioning wife #2 yet again about who she was, she added a few different questions. She asked if we lived together, to which wife #2 replied ‘yes’. Without missing a beat, my 86 year old dementia suffering mother said, with perfect clarity, “I’m glad you two have each other.” It was as close to a blessing as we may ever get, and my eyes are full of tears right now remembering that moment. I’m glad we have each other too, Mama. Me too.
We got her home, warm and cozy-comfy in her own house and said our goodbyes. She was back to not knowing the correct season or holiday, but she was happy. And so were we.
So, we made it through Thanksgiving ’16, a Thanksgiving not to ever be forgotten, for many reasons but mostly for that one moment of clarity and unconditional love. We are truly blessed.