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View Diary: What drove you nuts in the middle of all the thankfulness? (177 comments)

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  •  It was a horrible Thanksgiving. I'm sick and (11+ / 0-)

    tired of living smack dab in the middle of rural Steve King country. In nearly nine years I've only found three people I feel happy about being with--and they're all older women who don't know how to howl at the moon, if you catch my drift. Tea parties are lovely, but I like to Get Down, too.:-D

      And, none of them remembered that my husband, daughter and I are--once more--all alone for Thanksgiving. We couldn't invite them; they all have huge families to spend the day with...If you didn't grow up here, have a bazillion relatives, and  act like a repressed Lutheran from "Lake Woebegone" then you're an Outsider till  you die. I'm so lonely. I have lots of good friends, liberal, laughing, lively friends, all over the country....but none here. We have to live here because of my husband's job, and as I result I'm dying inside from loneliness.

        My older daughter was stuck in Philadelphia--we can't afford to fly her home for Thanksgiving AND Christmas--and because she works retail couldn't even carve out the time to go spend Thanksgiving with her lovely boyfriend's family, in Baltimore. So, she was all alone, too.

      And I just couldn't take all the excited, gushing updates about HOW MANY PEOPLE were coming for Thanksgiving dinner, how many fantastic friends were sitting at the table, how much food they were cooking, blah blah blah and all the extended family photos, on Facebook, either, so I deactivated my account.

        My parents were wonderful, amazing people but since they've died, my siblings have turned cold and distant--I wonder now if they've ever really cared about our family, or merely tolerated me because our parents lived nearby. I've driven thousands of miles to visit each of them, many times, in the past 8 years (and I was invited ;-) but not one of them has bothered  come out to boring, rural Iowa in the 8 years since the last funeral, to visit ME at my home.  We can't afford to drive to Texas or Philadelphia or Atlanta for a family dinner, anyway...

      Last year, the three of us tried to put up a good show, cooking all the food and sitting down and trying to ignore the Gorilla in the room, but we almost always eat home cooked meals together, anyway, so it just felt like a lot of work for a pretend "Holiday."  This year, when it became evident that--once again--we'd be all alone again for Thanksgiving, while our neighbor's driveways filled up with cars and their yards with laughing children, we just said "Fuck It" and tried to ignore the whole thing.  It didn't work.

      We couldn't go do good deeds and help out at a charity site. My husband is on call today and can't go more than 20 minutes from work in that tiny town of 4000. We live in an even smaller town of only 1000. We were going to take the dog and try to find some "nature"for a walk,  in this land of endless  Monsanto fields, but the wind howled at nearly 40mph all day...AND tomorrow is my 57th birthday, to pile stress upon stress. We'd planned to drive (2.5 hours just to get to an interesting place!) down to Omaha and visit the museum and go out to dinner and see either "Lincoln" or "Anna Karenina" (since, of course, I don't expect a birthday bash with all my friends in attendance...they're hundreds of miles from this wasteland). But I just checked the bank account and we don't have enough money to buy the gas to get there, or pay for the restaurant.

      And, yes, this is a monumental whine. Forced isolation in a tiny town, on the open prairie, in November,  in a Red part of a state evenly split down the middle (western Iowa: boring and Republican; eastern Iowa: liberal and full of interesting people and things to do) with no extended family and real, true friends, can do that to a person.  

       I'm sorry. But I had to vent and you posted this thread and, hey!  You'll all feel so much better about your day, after reading this... :-D


    •  I know exactly how you feel. (4+ / 0-)

      While I am really sick, I am also just really sad. One of my brothers died in January and this is the first thanksgiving without him. And while no one in our family is very old yet compared to some, we are still spread out across the country. I don't have any family near me to spend it with, and if I did, it wouldn't be much fun considering I am sick.

      But even if I wasn't, I couldn't see it being very fun, the first of any holiday's after a loved one you are really close to dies, are very difficult.

      My whole family was really close, in a way our siblings were much closer than some. Our whole family was homeschooled (and most of us still turned out liberal, go figure), but for that reason, and going to a traditional Catholic Church, we didn't know too many people. And there were six of us. So we were each others best friends, super close. His loss was devastating.

      Right now things are tight financially, I don't know when I am going to go back to college, and I am living paycheck to paycheck nowhere near my family. So I don't really feel that I have much to be thankful for. I know I have more than some, I currently have food (thanks to government assistance!), and a roof over my head, and a (for now) working car (that isn't very good). But I don't feel very optimistic.

      I tried to be optimistic for so long, and I did so well, but I am starting to wear down. It's hard sometimes. It really is. I know there must be some hope out there, I'm not ready to despair, someday things will be better. It's just that it seems so far off, and that there is going to be so much struggle until then. It's really disheartening. Oh well.

      As long as we have love, we will always triumph over hate, for love is the most powerful force in the universe. There is nothing greater.

      by Crazy Moderate on Thu Nov 22, 2012 at 09:35:06 PM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Hugs to you, PG. (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Julia Grey

      Thanksgiving isn't a holiday here in Germany, but with Mr Mo and Youngest both here on doctor-ordered bed rest… for me, it added up to a slightly more stressful regular workday than usual. I managed to find a small turkey and we had kind of an abbreviated T-day among just us. Would have invited some neighbors if (a) they'd been available (unlikely, given their crazy work hours), and (b) youngest wasn't infectious.

      Oldest daughter in SF was invited to relatives and we got to skype with her. But middle daughter was traveling to NJ and thence to VT with her almost-fiancé and we didn't hear from her at all. Nor will we get to see either Stateside daughter at Christmas this year. (Hoping for a family get-together someplace during the late spring/early summer.)

      Ah well. Here's hoping next year will be a more socially satisfying experience for us both.

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