I don’t remember ever eating pies in my early childhood. I think I started doing
so only when we arrived to New York and perhaps on the first or second Thanksgiving
in the mid 1960’s.
My mom was not a baker. She wasn’t really even a good cook but Thanksgiving got a hold
of her and she relished the holiday year after year because it gave her an excuse to gather
together the small number of family members we had in New York and the large number
of friends she and my dad had made over the years.
I remember Thanksgiving as always being special. The aromas, the large amounts of food
and most of all, the fact that Mom was not paying any attention to how much I was eating.
On this one day, she forgot all about my being overweight and was perhaps thankful for
everything she had, including her fat daughter!
It’s really odd. I always knew I was fat but I never really thought about it until or unless
someone commented. But I guess someone always did. My well-meaning aunts, my mom
who saw my “condition” as an physical reminder of my neediness…teachers, friends, etc.
The ironic thing is that I was never really that fat and if left alone the fat would probably
have disappeared naturally eventually.
By the time I was 14, I had a couple of close friends whose family celebrated Thanksgiving
in a big way, with lots of different foods from my own family. It was not unusual for me to
partake of two other feasts after or before my family’s! I have nothing but wonderful memories
of this special holiday which remains my favorite till today!
When our children were old enough to help, they did so. Our daughter put together the
packages of flatware in their Thanksgiving napkins, our sons cut up broccoli and cauliflower
florets and trimmed the ends of the green beans. Everyone participated and the atmosphere
at our home was always positive and loving.
My children are all grown up now and they have been celebrating on their own, with their
friends and loved ones for several years. The distance between us (and the cost of travel at
this time) makes me miss them very much but I am grateful for today’s technology and what
it allows us to do in terms of communication.
I am about to start making my list for the small gathering I will host on Thursday. It will
include traditional and non traditional foods and of course, lots of pies.
Happy Thanksgiving to us all.