V: Before you Black Friday…

I rarely talk about my job. My personal life. Unless it’s for a good cause
Nonetheless, it happens… sometimes. 
My sister and I started a website that was devoted to talking about fashion. Trends. Things. Lovely material things. Along the way, though, something happened. You know, life. It was only natural we wanted to become a voice for something more meaningful. 
If you recall, I started out at a senior living community. As with any recent college graduate, finding your footing post-“bubble” can be a bit of a struggle. I just didn’t understand how some people just fell into these glamorous jobs. Meanwhile, I felt pretty incompetent. Seriously, graduating Magna Cum Laude feels pretty pointless when you’re struggling to put a floor-length coat on a person with limited mobility in a wheelchair.  
However, in the four years that I’ve worked in healthcare since, I’ve gotten to know and grown close to countless individuals. I spent hours listening to their stories. Happiness. Love. Heartbreak. Loss. Poverty. War.  There is a saying that you are the author of your own novel. If that is the case, they trusted me with their most privileged chapters. Like a sponge, I soaked up every lesson I could. They offered me immeasurable insight. In return, I was there for them when death was imminent, be it holding their hand or even singing Amazing Grace.
Someone with a terminal illness once told me that life was like a puzzle. You put the pieces together one by one and it isn’t until the very end that everything comes together. At which point, the entire picture spreads out before you. Even though I still don’t have all the pieces, I began to understand why I worked in geriatrics. Through their stories, I learned so much about what is important.
Then, last Christmas, someone very close to me almost died unexpectedly. Suddenly, the holidays weren’t about family traditions or presents. It was a matter of life and death. The best gift we received wasn’t found under the Christmas tree. It didn’t cost a thing. It didn’t require several hours of standing in line, away from family. It was the fact our loved one survived, which was truly a miracle.
It is only a matter of time before Christmas verbiage monopolizes the media. The material kind of Christmas. What we do have control of, however, is how we look at the holiday season. I’m not trying to stop you from taking advantage of Black Friday deals. Trust me, we’ve already shared our first thorough overview here. I’m just here to tell you to cherish every moment this Thanksgiving.
Enjoy the time spent together.
Enjoy the laughter.
Enjoy arguing over who is going to get the last piece of pie.
At the end of your life the day, those will be the memories you’ll cherish.
Not sales. Not the oh-so-hot-trendy “it” item.
Thank you to our family, who have supported us, encouraged us, and been there for us every step of the way. 
Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!