So I am back in Georgia for the holiday. We are staying about an hour south of Atlanta, with my mother-in-law, but most of today I spent back in Atlanta, taking care of a few details at the old house before the new occupants move in. It’s been a bit of an odd visit so far. I was in Atlanta just a few weeks ago for a conference, but on that occasion I saw quite a few friends. On this trip, those same friends are out of town–and even though I don’t see those friendly faces on a daily basis anymore, being back in town and not seeing them here made me miss them all the more. And last time I was here I noted that the house no longer felt like my old home, but that feeling of disconnect was all the more real with the knowledge that come Monday morning, someone else will be calling that place home.
But the biggest dislocation that we are all experiencing, of course, is the absence of my father-in-law. We will be celebrating our first Thanksgiving since he passed away, and it is going to be hard. Yes, we all still have much to be grateful for, but his absence will be palpable.
I am hoping we can take a moment around the table to remember him. One of the things I will be expressing gratitude for tomorrow is the fact that all three of my children got to know all four of their grandparents and are old enough to keep those stories and memories alive. And I can think of no better way to honor my father-in-law’s memory tomorrow than to take the time to share some of those memories as a family.