We had an office lunch party yesterday, with food enough to feed four or five times the number of employees who showed up to eat. There was a big pot of homemade chili with all the fixings, another pot of pasta, and then steaming trays of empanadas (delicious Spanish meat patties), and yummy rice with chicken. Certain of us also insisted on bringing salads and rolls to round out the pre-Thanksgiving feast.
Hers was a hasty lunch, sandwiched as she was by meetings with students and others at the University.
But she stood up and holding her plate, she said she wanted to stop for a moment and thank each of us in the office. She said that she is very very grateful for all of us, and for our contributions.
She told us in no uncertain terms that we really mattered to her. And she encouraged us to tell others in our lives that we are thankful for them. Love, she said, love, love, love -- it's everything.
She got a little choked up when she made this little speech, and I noticed her eyes looking teary.
This is a very very devoted supervisor, and her words have stuck with me. And so I want to pass on Maritza's advice to anyone who happens to be reading. We can all make long lists of the things for which we are grateful at Thanksgiving, but certainly the people in our lives top that list.
Maritza reminds me that we should all take a moment -- or several moments -- this week to tell the people we value, the people we love, the people who matter to us, just how much they count.
When you think about it, we can never ever say enough "thank you's" to and for the people we love. We can never replace them when they are gone. The precious connections we share are worth our careful attention. We can't lose by saying some version of "I love you," or "you matter to me so much." Or maybe it's time to get specific. Maybe we can say "this is why you matter," and then spend a few minutes going into detail.
Life sails along so fast that it's understandable we don't take the time to live in gratitude. We don't spend the time really feeling grateful for the things, and especially the people, we so easily can take for granted.
But we should try harder.
So along with preparing the turkey and all the fixings this week, remember to give thanks for the people. Because in the end, they are the ones who keep feeding you long after the dinner is over.