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A Family Luncheon

Gratitude Journal — Day 7

Photo by Kevin Delvecchio on Unsplash

On Sunday afternoon, Maddy and I went to A’s house for a family luncheon and to (finally) celebrate our 20th anniversary with the family. To our surprise, we discovered that one of T’s grandkids’ birthdays was also on October 31st. We used to celebrate Maddy’s mom’s birthday on our anniversary before she passed, so it was delightful to have another reason to celebrate that day.

Maddy has a large family — three brothers and three sisters, lots of nieces and nephews, and quite a few grandnieces and grandnephews. Maddy’s father and his wife are still with us, but Father’s health is failing rapidly. I fear he won’t be with us much longer. I no longer refer to this amazing, warm and caring family as my in-laws. They are my family now too and I love them all as if they were blood kin.

This was a smaller gathering than normal. Many of the family either live out of town or were away or working for the moment. Still, it was a delightful gathering and the first we’d had since the whole Covid lockdown last year. In total, eleven of us gathered around the table, A said a blessing, and then we delved into homemade vegetarian chili, artisan bread with butter, salsa and guacamole with chips, and later some brownies for dessert. The conversations flowed as we all settled into small groups, sometimes overlapping one another. It was a lovely, relaxing afternoon.

As the luncheon wrapped up, T, her son J and his wife A said a blessing prayer over me for all the health issues I am dealing with at the moment. I felt their love and serenity wash over me as their hands touched my back.

Soon, we were all saying our goodbyes. Hugs and kisses upon cheeks were exchanged as we all gathered on the front porch and then descended to our cars. To say I am grateful for the time spent with them doesn’t do the emotions I felt justice. Maddy’s family — MY family — has always welcomed me with open arms. They’ve never judged me and they’ve always been kind and loving toward me. My heart swells with thankfulness each and every time I am around them and they are always on my mind and in my heart.

©2021 Lori Carlson. All Rights Reserved.

This is in response to the November Monthly Theme prompt — Keep a 30-day Gratitude journal. I am aiming to commit to this. Wish me luck!

Lori Carlson writes Poetry, Fiction, Articles, Creative Non-Fiction, and Personal Essays. Most of her topics are centered around Relationships, Spirituality, Life Lessons, Mental Health, Nature, Loss, Death, and the LGBTQ+ community. She is the Owner/Editor of Promptly Written and Not For Bedtime Stories. Check out her personal Medium blog here.

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Writing Coach, Poet, Fiction Writer, Essayist, Artist, Dreamer | “Enlightenment is when a wave realizes it is the Ocean” ~Thich Nhat Hanh