After dinner we all sat in the living room and shared stories, my parents and siblings, their partners and I, while Bryan assembled and decorated the Christmas tree and Harrison chased the dogs and "Begin Again" played on the TV in the background and snow fell over the lake outside. At some point the conversation turned to talk of dental visits and everybody, myself included, had a nice laugh as Kelly and my mother told the story of the time I cried in the lobby of Dr. Bergman's office for a good long while as a seven-year-old because I was so disappointed in myself for having cavities.
"For some reason I can remember all of your childhood disappointments very clearly, even more clearly than mine," my sister said to me after she'd finished telling the story, and both of my parents agreed. Then, for the next several minutes, the three of them clued-in the newest members of my family, the ones who weren't yet around when I was young, to all of my most traumatic childhood moments, including the vampire makeup incident from first grade, the Beauty and the Beast mask fiasco from second and the accidental haircut from third. We four concluded when the stories were through that my expectations were probably too high back then, for myself and for others.
It was nice to sit and laugh with my family tonight, even if most of the laughs were at my expense. It reminded me of Thanksgiving last year when laughter kinda saved the holiday. As I searched for that particular Thanksgiving post earlier tonight, I discovered that many of my Thanksgivings, ones spent in Los Angeles and Pittsburgh and San Francisco, have been preserved by posts on this blog, so I linked to some of them below, in the event that you're food-comatose and have nothing to do.