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Why I'm Thankful Even Though I Spent Thanksgiving Sick in Bed

I write this from my bed while the smells of Thanksgiving dinner waft up the stairs and I hear my little one running around with her grandparents. Unfortunately, I became severely ill due to the most recent e. coli outbreak. Because I am an immunocompromised Crohn’s patient, it’s taking a lot longer for me to heal than a healthy person might. I spent the early part of this week in the hospital with severe dehydration, and was annoyed with myself today for not being well enough to go downstairs and spend Thanksgiving with my family. However, as I was beginning to wallow, I realized just how much I have to be thankful for this year.

I’m thankful for family. My husband and I live halfway across the country from our families, and yet any one of our parents would not hesitate to jump on the plane to be by our sides when I’m sick. (In fact, one of them did and all four of them offered.) I’m thankful for my husband who ran out on Thanksgiving to get me more red Gatorade because the blue one made me nauseous and he knows I need to stay hydrated. (Just one of the many things he’s done for me over the past several days.) I’m thankful for my friends who understand when I’m not up for a phone call or can’t come to Friendsgiving and still check in to see how I’m feeling. I’m thankful for cats who refuse to leave my side and big, goofy dogs who just want me to be OK. I’m thankful for my little one’s snuggles and giggles, for parents and grandparents, and for siblings and friends who stay in touch while they’re halfway across the world.

This was not the way I would’ve chosen to spend my Thanksgiving (and I hope I never have to spend it this way again!), but it’s certainly made me appreciate how much I have to be thankful for. Happy Thanksgiving everyone. May your hearts and bellies be full today.

Getty image by Demaerre.