Thankful for us adopting him
As we sit down to our Thanksgiving dinner, we take a moment to mention something we are thankful for.  Just one thing.  It doesn't have to be profound.  It doesn't have to be a big thing.  It just needs to be something we are truly thankful for.

Thankful to be legal!
As Maddy poured herself a glass of wine, she told us she was thankful to finally be 21.  

Without skipping a beat Mikias said, "I am thankful to Mom and Dad for adopting me."

As Jemberu squirted ketchup all over his turkey he told us what he was thankful for, "Ketchup!"

This may sound weird, but I am looking forward to the Thanksgiving that Mikias is thankful for a condiment, or an age, a sport, a pet, a food or a girl (actually, not a girl, not yet).  It's not just Thanksgiving that reminds him to be thankful for us adopting him.  There is not a night that he says his prayers that he doesn't thank God for us adopting him.  Not just thankful for us.  Thankful for us adopting him.

Thankful for ketchup
Jemberu never tells us that he is thankful for us adopting him.  He takes us and his place in our family for granted.  I like that.  

When I was a kid, I don't recall being thankful that my parents adopted me.  I took my place in my family for granted, like Jemberu.  I want Mikias to take his place for granted as well.

I wonder if the thankfulness is the result of remembering.  Mikias remembers his life before us. Jemberu does not.   Mikias remembers wanting a family.  He remembers things that make him grateful for the love and security that a family provides. I can't take those realities away from him.  I can't make him tuck those memories away, where they are not so close to the surface.  I know that will take it's own time.

So, when Mikias is a teenager and I write a blog post about him taking us for granted, do me a favor and  remind me to be thankful.