It seems like a simple thing to be thankful for but, if you think about it, it is really one of the most important aspects of our lives.
I am thankful that I have a mother who worked tirelessly, and made some tough choices, to ensure that her children always had something to eat at every meal. In many parts of the world, parents cannot guarantee this, no matter how hard they may try. In some parts of the world, there is no assurance to parents that they will be able to provide even a single meal each day. I am thankful that my mother never had to worry about this possibility and that me and my siblings never had to cope with that reality.
I am thankful that I live in a country that has a system in place to provide food to those in need. While some may argue that this system is not enough or that it needs work, and I won’t necessarily disagree, I think it’s important to remember that we at least have something. It’s important to be thankful for the fact that there is a mother somewhere, who despite her best efforts, can’t make ends meet and has a place to go for food rather than being forced to watch her children go hungry.
Beyond the most basic form of having food available, I am thankful for the opportunities I have had to taste food from different cultures and in different countries. I’ve had dinner made by Hangi (traditional New Zealand Maori cooking method) and fresh baked bread in France. Within the US, I’ve discovered Japanese, Thai, and Indian cuisine. These are foods that, as a picky child, I would have never imagined eating. Having been given the chance to, however, I love them.
I am thankful that I’ve had the tools available to me to learn how to make my own meals, which go beyond food and have turned into routines and traditions. From roasted corn and crab chowder to Thai yellow coconut curry, these meals have become a part of my family and friend’s lives through extension of Jared and I. To have the pleasure of cooking a meal that makes others happy is truly something to be grateful for.
Food is one of the greatest things to be thankful for, but is often overlooked. Next time you go grocery shopping, take a quiet moment among the craziness to be grateful for the choices we have available.