Essay: Let’s Learn to be Thankful for Thanksgiving

Alec Karam | The PhoenixLoyola A&E writer Grace Niemiec argues the Thanksgiving holiday season deserves more appreciation.

We’re a week away from Thanksgiving break and a buzz is in the air. Not for the upcoming holiday, but one that’s over a month away. 

With its message of gratefulness and backdrop of peak autumnal beauty, Thanksgiving should be a holiday worth focusing on in November.

At least it would seem so, but the moment the clock struck midnight on Nov. 1, the beginning of “All I Want For Christmas Is You” already had people foaming at the mouth for the winter mood, re-entering the iTunes charts that day.

What happened to the hype around the “Christian Girl Fall” aesthetic? Where has the “Sweater Weather” by the Neighbourhood energy gone? After Halloween, it seems to have faded behind plans for Instagram posts of couples in matching flannel pajamas and an annual obsession with Mariah Carey. 

Though it may be sandwiched between two of the year’s most dynamic holidays, Thanksgiving has plenty to offer. Why pine for the gray of late December when you can savor the crisp fall weather along the Lake Shore Campus? 

 You can cozy up in your room and watch “Fantastic Mr. Fox,” a favorite Fall-centric film of mine that’s brimmed with themes of friends, family and gratefulness. You can even soak in the sounds of Fall through Taylor Swift’s recently re-released album, “Red (Taylor’s Version),” if that’s your thing. 

Better yet, spend time with family. All you have to do is tell them how much they mean to you — not a cent required. 

Find time to thank friends, too. In my few months at Loyola, I’ve met some of the kindest, most supportive people and Thanksgiving gives me the perfect excuse to gush about how much they mean to me. So whether it’s a meaningful text or a passing grateful thought, find a way to be thankful for the family you’ve built here. 

If not for your family and friends, be thankful for the simple things in life: your education, Loyola’s low COVID-19 positivity rates, changing leaves, Sister Jean and the fact that you don’t go to DePaul. 

With so much to be thankful for, Thanksgiving might just be the most wonderful time of the year — and we need to be more grateful for it.

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