Thankful for things he doesn’t have

Randy Butler Contributing columnist

Randy Butler Contributing columnist

Like most of you I spent Thanksgiving eating turkey, which I don’t even really care for, with my family. We have all heard it and even said to ourselves that this holiday has become nothing more than the precursor to Christmas. It’s just something we must get out of the way for the important holiday to make it in time. Why, and when that happened, I really have no idea. Maybe when Black Friday became such a big deal?

No matter the reason, Thanksgiving is the holiday when we all say how thankful we are for the blessings that we mostly don’t deserve.

This year was yet again a different Thanksgiving. Typically, we have 40-50 family members at our home on Thanksgiving. This year we only had our immediate family since there were so many with the flu. This reduced the number to just a little under 20, but it was still a great day.

I am sure I was one of the last salespeople to join the Facebook craze. Since day one of my career in selling I have always read anything I could on how to make better my trade. Facebook is at the top of every list of places to go to promote your business. So about three to four years ago I made the leap. As I had no clue how to get started, my daughter set up a personal page and a business page for real estate for me.

It amazes me at times the things I see on the site. I wonder how anyone could have their name attached to what we all see. When I was growing up all families had issues of some sort. The thing was you kept the issues privately at home. It was never broadcasted for all to see. It almost seems like we are all living in a fishbowl where whoever is walking by can look or even stay and watch a while. Facebook has taken away the privacy that used to exist and taken a lot of what used to be unacceptable to now being tolerated.

But with so many bad things, good things can also come from them as well. I had the best third grade teacher ever at Webster Elementary. She played a very important part in my young life as she was the one that taught me math. I still remember the flashcards in front of me and her doing it repeatedly until it finally stuck in my brain. She never gave up on me. Though I have still yet to speak with Mrs. Grice, I have connected with her through Facebook. Those people that were such a part of your childhood that just somehow vanished into thin air — Facebook is the best way I know to find them.

But, once in a while, I see something on the page that just sticks with me. Something that I can’t get out of my head. It can be very simple. A phrase, a picture, an old quote, or a host of other things. On Thanksgiving Day, I was scrolling and reading how everyone was spending the day with pictures of their friends and family and I came across what that day meant to Mr. Tom Gall of Hillsboro.

He wrote: “Thanksgiving! Give thanks for all that you have! But let me remind you to give thanks for the things you don’t have. We all have a list, but we never think about it. I don’t have a major health problem; get the point. On the other hand, I’m a foodie. Ruby’s noodles, Mark’s turkey, my scalloped oysters, and Taylor’s pecan cobbler and etc. For the empty seats at your tables give thanks for the privilege of knowing them. May God bless you all.”

I wish I had thought of that — to give thanks for what we don’t have. I am thankful that I am healthy. I am also thankful for the empty seats around the family table, for the ones that used to sit where others are now. I don’t have them with me but am thankful for knowing them. I do not have a bad marriage. Marriage has been very good to me for over 40 years. I do not have financial, legal or relational issues.

I am thankful for so many things I do not have.

Thanks, Tom Gall.

Randy Butler is a lifelong resident of Highland County and a licensed real estate agent for Classic Real Estate in Hillsboro.

Randy Butler Contributing columnist Butler Contributing columnist