WHEELING - If we're all being honest, every one of us is guilty.
There are things - our families, homes, vehicles, jobs, etc. - that are a part of our lives every day, but lots of time don't get a second of thought from sun up, to sun down. That's unfortunate, really, and we could all do a better job of being thankful, certainly, myself included.
We have to work too many hours. This or that always seems to need fixed at the house. Why does it feel like every time I turn around the cars need new tires? Can't our kids be quiet for just two seconds?
Yeah, even as I type that it seems pretty silly. There are so many folks out there that don't have regular contact with their family, don't have a home of which to speak, would love to not have to walk everywhere they go, and would be downright giddy to stand in the cold at work, rather than the unemployment line, that would trade for my problems in a heart beat. The sad thing is, we all know at least one person in these kinds of predicaments, yet still find trivial things in our own lives to complain about.
Today's the day we are told to give thanks, and we should. But don't make this the only time you stop to smell the roses. I'm trying to get down that path, but still have a bit more real estate to cover.
The simple truth is, speaking from a personal standpoint now, my life has an awful lot of upside these days. I'm married to a beautiful, loving wife, we have great support on both sides of the aisle, and we've got two beautiful, healthy girls. Yes, we also are fortunate to have two vehicles, which is essential with our opposite, hectic schedules. We live in a nice home and both have jobs we enjoy.
As if it couldn't possibly get better, we will welcome our third child into the world three weeks from today. Funny how these pregnancies seem to last forever, yet at the same time fly by so quickly. I assume we'll view our children growing up and leaving the house someday in much the same way.
This one's different, though. For the first time we will be the parents of a son.
Now, truth be told, both my wife and I have always wanted a boy. It's kind of ironic though, that we had, for the most part, resigned ourselves to the fact it wasn't going to be in the cards. That was something I think we both came to grips with after time.
You know what they say though, if you want to hear God laugh, tell Him your plans.
I also have to admit that it dawned on me recently that I have absolutely no idea how to take care of a son. I mean, for five years it's been nothing by Disney Princess this and pink and purple that. That's OK though, because nobody really knows how to take care of a child before you have your first, but you learn.
There are a lot of things to look forward to. The ball games, both in person and on television, the protection we'll provide for the females in our home for all of time, and the rough-housing are just a few that I really anticipate just off the top of my head. I've tried that last one with the girls and it generally ends in tears.
I guess what I am trying to say here is, our lives and their lengths are determined before we make our first sound on this planet, so why let one moment go by without a thankful thought? Do it not only today, but every day.
Happy Thanksgiving, Ohio Valley.
Shawn Rine can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org