Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I love that Thanksgiving is an entire day dedicated to eating and watching TV and socializing in a lazy way. I wonder if there comes a time in your life when spending Thanksgiving with your friends, your family of choice, instead of your family or origin, becomes acceptable, or more rewarding. I can't imagine not spending Thanksgiving with my mother, as I'm sure she'd be devastated if I told her I couldn't make it back. She is proud of the fact that we have never once missed Thanksgiving as a family. I'd hate to be the one to break her streak. And it's nice to come back home and see people who come back for the holidays, to catch up and hang out, the only time we're all in the same place at the same time.
But. The hassle of holiday travel. Lugging the suitcase up and down the stairs. Wrestling onto the bus / train / plane, stowing a bag. Sitting in traffic. Getting the time off work. Not being able to shake work-related anxiety. Dreading the return to my house, left in disarray in a packing frenzy, returning to a refrigerator left empty in preparation for the time away, returning to a pile of work that's a week behind. It seems like just having one or two days off work, to fill my own house with smells of Thanksgiving baking, spending it with the friends in the city who have such limited free time generally, watching football, lounging around, being able to really actually relax - that would be Thanksgiving.
Ah, the vacation conundrum. Take time off to keep yourself busy with other things than work, or take time off and sit on your couch doing nothing all day, doing nothing to learn more about the world or to try something new. After two years of work, it seems that I'm the latter type - as much as I'd love to do new and exciting things, at the end of the day, the only energy I have left goes to uncorking a bottle of red wine and planting myself on the couch.
I'm thankful to be with my family, to have a job that I love so much that it empties me, to have friends who, after all these years, I still see and enjoy and connect with. I hope that your Thanksgiving is wonderful in the ways that are important to you as well.