Giving thanks in trying times


Talon Cruz, Reporter

I don’t need to tell you that 2020’s been rough. With a veritable We Didn’t Start the Fire parody’s worth of bad news from this year alone, it’s easy to succumb to feelings of doom and gloom. To try to counteract this and get some good feelings going now that Thanksgiving is just around the corner, I asked a few people what they were thankful for in their lives, even during these trying times.

“I am thankful for my family, friends, flight, and theater. I have a job that pays, a camera that works, and friends I can talk to, so I am pretty happy.” – Charlie Beadle, Grade 12

Short and sweet, this quote really gets to the heart of the matter. Focusing on what you have rather than what you don’t can make all the difference in how you feel. As Charlie stated, he still has the people he cares about and various hobbies he can still take part in, and that’s all you really need to be happy. This isn’t to say you can’t be sad about things you’ve missed out on or lost due to the various problems facing the world right now, but every now and then remember what you have in spite of all of that. Sometimes, having people that care about you and a few things you enjoy is enough.

“I am thankful for being born into this world healthy and, knock on wood, no pressing health concerns. I am thankful to be born into a family that can financially support itself and me in my education and future life. I am thankful to have so much of my extended family to be alive and in good health and to be able to visit them often. I am thankful of the fantastic community that I have been raised in including the wonderful drama department that has guided me through much of my life. I am thankful for the roof over my head and the warm bed I get to sleep in every night. My fantastic dad who works his butt off to provide for my family. For my wonderful mom who has committed so much of her life to taking care of her children and allowing my dad to work as hard as he does. My little brother for teaching me patience and all the love he gives me. My sister for all the life lessons and constant laughter. And my dog for bringing some extra joy into my life. I am thankful to live in the best country in the world and to be protected and safe in it.” – Lucas Sanchez, Grade 11

The world is full of wonderful things, and it’s nice to remember that sometimes. The importance of safe, secure, happy home cannot be understated when it comes to things like this, and I’m glad that according to my responses, so many people have that. There are a million fantastic things that happen each day; you just need to look. 

“I’m thankful for my loving family, supportive friends, my chromebook, my above average school, my roof over my  head, my making it through junior year, my ability to participate in theater, my sports team being able to practice, and my college applications being almost done.” – Ember Carrera, Grade 12

You may see a theme emerging, in responders being most thankful for the people around them, and I think that says a lot. When so much has changed, it’s nice to know that there are people who will stay with you through it all. Ember also points out another significant idea, that even little things that we usually take for granted should be appreciated. A good school, a safe home, a loving family, all of these things are so easily overlooked when we think about what makes us happy and what we’re thankful for, but considering how much bad news we are constantly bombarded by, it’s never been more important to consider all of these little blessings in life. 

Several other people I asked emphasized the importance of family and friends, as well as numerous other tiny things they find themselves thankful for. Each day is a series of small miracles. Sure, sometimes there are rough days. However, in my experience, the good ultimately outweighs the bad. It’s my philosophy that every day you survive and reach the end of is a good day. As the saying goes, any landing you walk away from is a good landing.

This brings me to what I’m personally thankful for. Admittedly, it has been a difficult year for my family in several ways, but there are a few key things I am so thankful for. I’m thankful, of course, to have a loving and safe home life. I’m thankful that the world is slowly moving back towards normal. I’m thankful that distance working and learning meant that my family could spend that much more time with our dog before she passed away. I’m thankful that so many of my issues are so small in comparison to the world. I’m thankful that I’m alive, and will live to see another day. Most of all, I’m thankful that I can get up each day and feel hope for the future.

So, this Thanksgiving, be hopeful, and be thankful. I hope this served as a nice break from the doom and gloom that has infected so much of the world right now, and I wish you a happy Thanksgiving from all of us at the Hawkeye.