We had been hoping to connect at least with family today, having invited our daughter Sarah and friends down to enjoy a Thanksgiving feast with us here in Laguna Beach. We were looking forward to the occasion, and spent the afternoon yesterday in the kitchen, preparing the good food that is in itself a metaphor for connection on such a day. Then the phone rang last night and Sarah's boyfriend told us she had been admitted to the emergency hospital in severe pain and would have to spend the night there. This morning, he called again to let us know that she is being transferred to the general hospital for further care. Instead of the Thanksgiving dinner we had been looking forward to, we'll be driving up to Los Angeles in a little while to see how she is doing.
The lesson, I guess, is not to count your turkeys. I don't want to seem frivolous, with my daughter suffering, but this is clearly one of those times when it's particularly important to let go of the expectations and deal with the reality as it unfolds. In the meantime, our connection will be different from the one we had anticipated; but it will still be connection, and will be valued for what it is. As for Thanksgiving, we extend our gratitude to all those who are selflessly giving of their time to take care of our daughter on a day when they might otherwise be with their own families; and to all those good people throughout the world who devote their lives to taking care of others.