UNITED STATES—The Thanksgiving holiday has arrived, and while so MANY of us focus our attention on the food and shopping, many of us forget what the holiday is all about: family and being thankful. I mean it’s not easy to get the entire family together to host a festive dinner without a few hiccups along the way, but do we as Americans really reflect on the things that we’re thankful for in life.

I recall as a kid we did this often in school, but as an adult it seems rare that my family actually asks each other the things in life that we appreciate the most. I mean I think about the region of the country that I live in and it’s bitter cold, so much to the point that a night on the street can result in death. I’m thankful that I have a roof over my head, I’m thankful that I have family that care about me, just as much as I care about them, I’m thankful to be able to give to those who might need something 10x more than I need it.

I don’t know what it is about the holidays that make me so emotional, but I think so many of us take life for granted. We forget the things that we have today can so easily be taken away from us with the snap of a finger. We sometimes take for granted those people in our lives that have our back no matter what, we forget to be thankful that we actually have a job. I mean while the opportunities for work at the current moment is endless for those looking to work in retail, it is not a guarantee. What is here today is can be gone tomorrow.

I’ve come to take small pauses throughout the week to think about those things; to stop complaining about those things that are not as relevant. Not as serious, I mean the petty little things that I might b**** about is nothing compared to those who have no clue where their next meal will come from. If they will have a place to lay their head, worrying about health insurance or becoming ill, a lack of transportation, the list goes on and on.

My point is, we sometimes complain about the minute things in life, when we shouldn’t. Perhaps if we were actually FORCED to sit with family and to really think about things that have transpired over the course of our lives. This is more geared towards the adults, but this is not to say the little ones are not able to provide any insight or wisdom. I mean sometimes one can be utterly surprised by the things that come out the mouths of youngsters; some are far smarter and wiser than we’d like to give credit for.

Well Thanksgiving is indeed about the food, family, shopping and memories, at its core it’s about reflection. If we all actually took a moment and really thought about things in life, we’d realize we have things far better than we’d like to admit.