OK, I’m just two in with these writing prompts and I’m already stumped. This is the strangest topic I’ve ever been asked to write about. The worst Thanksgiving dish I’ve ever had? Really?
Hmmmm. Is this intended to be non-fiction? If so, I’ve got nothing for you. No burnt turkeys, lumpy gravy, or Jell-O casserole containing my crazy aunt’s cat toys. A few soggy veggies here and there, but nothing that really stands out for me.
There must be something deeper to this prompt and I’m not seeing it.
While I can’t think of any dishes that’ve truly disappointed me, I can clearly recall moments –specifically, the actions or absences of certain people– that have made Thanksgiving quite sad for me.
For example, this year (Thanksgiving 2015), my mother chose not to spend the holiday with my husband and I, opting to “start a new tradition” with her and her partner of thirteen years.
We’ve spent practically every Thanksgiving and Christmas together since my father’s death in October 2006, so her decision to start a new tradition (excluding me, her only daughter) stung. Our relationship has been in a rocky place for the last few months, and this year’s absence definitely left a cloying, sour pain in my chest. While I loved spending time with my grandmother, my in-laws, including my gorgeous three year old niece and her parents, there was a void knowing my mother could have been there and chose not to be. I understand we’re both adults with our own lives, but Thanksgiving is one of the few days where public acknowledgement of our gratitude and appreciation for family is not only encouraged, it’s expected. While it wasn’t necessarily a dish, it definitely was one of the worst moments I’ve had on Thanksgiving.
Does that count as fulfilling my writing prompt?
Hoping #3 is more my style.
~ Victoria Elizabeth