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Perfectly Imperfect

It’s human nature to crave perfect moments. No-one wakes up in the morning and says, “I sure hope I have a messed-up day!” However, most perfect moments are forgettable. STOP, and ponder that....Most perfect moments are forgettable. Usually, the phrase “Remember the time when……” is followed by something very flawed, and that perfect day on the beach, perfect run or perfect Thanksgiving is quickly forgotten. 

Researching this further, I asked my kids what they remember about Thanksgiving. They immediately go to eating and their favorite foods….God bless their little Ebberwein hearts, and NO, we did not have Chick-fil-A nuggets last year….but more on that later.

In my twisted mind, I knew they would remember coming down the steps in the morning to the smell of turkey cooking in the oven and excitedly waiting to see Santa at the end of the Macy’s Day Parade. NOPE! They remember my absolute finest moment going to Thanksgiving dinner with my Mom’s family in Claxton.

All day long I had cooked and ironed clothes, so that all seven children would look their best. As we turned into the long driveway of the pecan grove, I made sure the girls new bows were in place and the boys shirts were tucked in.

The family must have seen us coming down the drive because as we parked the 12 passenger van, they all walked out to greet us. That is when I noticed….I had forgotten my shoes. Like a crazy person, I yelled to John, “Lock the doors. No-one gets out,” and quickly tried to explain to him what had happened as the awaiting family encircled the van. “Crack the window and tell them that Stephen just started throwing up,” I said in desperation as Stephen looked down at his shirt then over to Jacob in confusion. 

I watched the disbelief in John’s face as he surveyed the situation then said to me in a very calming voice, “It’s no big deal, your family loves you,” then to the rest of the car he shouted, “Everybody out!” You never have to ask kids more than once to get out of a car, and they quickly made their escape. John, the traitor, was already making his rounds greeting everyone when I made my walk of shame to the house. The family lovingly poked jokes at me during the night, and called the next morning to make sure I had found my shoes.

Ten years have passed, and yet I’m still asked every Thanksgiving if I’ll be wearing shoes. It was a perfectly imperfect moment!

So, as we approach this holiday season, which is sure to be filled with uncertainty, craziness and very imperfect moments, try and realize that being together is all that matters. Try something new, make a new dish, set up tables in your garage or dress up as pilgrims and Indians. Just know that we will definitely be remembering this year.

Many blessings to you and your families! I’ll be seeing you in the Chick-fil-A line on Wednesday.

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