THANKSGIVING IS NOT "TURKEY DAY" FOR ME!
I never refer to Thanksgiving Day as "Turkey Day." That, quite frankly, is more than borderline offensive to me, and trivializes something that is very important in my spiritual life. That day is not simply about eating turkey or ham or anything else, and I am at least as annoyed by hearing references to "Turkey Day" as some folks are by the generic "Happy Holidays" instead of "Merry Christmas." In fact, since there are several important holidays celebrated by several of the major religions around the end of December --- and since I have many friends who are not Christians --- I don't find "Happy Holidays" offensive at all.
For me, Gratitude is one of the most important of all the virtues, and I don't practice it nearly enough. I believe that I really should live each moment in a spirit of gratitude, but I don't. So, taking a whole day out of the year when I focus my thoughts on the blessings I have received is important, and that is the very least that I can expect of myself.
What in the world do I have to be thankful for? I'm old...and poor...and not in good health...so, "grateful" for what?
Lots of things: I'm vertical...I'm breathing (on my own)...I have a roof over my head...I have friends...I have wonderful memories of travels and homes I enjoyed when I was much better off financially...I'm being seen and not viewed...
I have MUCH for which to be thankful --- if I will just focus on those things instead of on what I wish I had...or what somebody else has...or what I used to have...
Aside from the fact that my vegetarian and vegan friends certainly don't think of the fourth Thursday of each November as "Turkey" Day, or that turkeys don't have much to be thankful for on that day, I see Thanksgiving Day as a day on which I make myself concentrate on the blessings God is always giving me. I have said before, and I say again: God is blessing me...even NOW, no matter what is happening in my life. And I accept God's blessings now (He doesn't force them me).
THANK YOU, Father!