Eat days

This year marks a momentous occasion: I am taking over part of the Thanksgiving preparations.

Not just kicking in a casserole or lending the use of my oven. In addition to baking my homemade mac and cheese, I am making the dressing and the pumpkin pie.

The pumpkin pie, especially, feels sacred. Like it’s an honor to be allowed to prepare such a dish. I feel like a kid who gets to sit at the grown-ups table at last.

Part of this new order is just shifting our thinking. Though I am not just an adult but a mommy (and middle aged, for pete’s sake), my parents still think of me as a kid. (And always will…I have no illusions about that.) So I have to remind them occasionally that I’ve been feeding and housing myself, paying taxes and keeping the lights on, for 20 years now. And occasionally, I have to say things like, “I’m making part of Thanksgiving dinner this year.” Because they’re not going to ask me to do that…I’m just a kid.

Mom’s RA is better this week, but she has her ups and downs. She’s in a bad flare lately, and winding down on her latest prednisone pack. Which means she never knows from one day to the next if she will be able to dress herself. I figure asking her to cube a loaf of bread and roll out a pie crust is a bit much, considering.

Also, I’ve come to realize that Mom doesn’t really like to cook. She likes traditions, and food is one of those. But the actual act of cooking is not one of her favorites. I, on the other hand, love to cook. (It’s washing the dishes I’m not crazy about.) So it just makes sense that I take some of the load.

When Anya was younger, she told Mimi that holidays are “eat days.” Nobody goes to work; everyone goes to Mimi’s house to eat. Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the eating season. Hopefully I (and my oven!) are up to the task.

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