Thanksgiving typically begins the season of examining your life over the past year, gathering close to your loved ones and giving thanks for your blessings, great and small. If you've undergone a divorce or custody battle during the past year, you may feel that there is little or nothing to be thankful for. I urge you to reconsider and take the "glass half full" approach.
You may feel that the divorce has wrecked all the traditions that you and your ex had, or that the holidays are a time of sadness because they force you to recognize what no longer exists. Look at it this way: there are now two houses rather than one and that means two new opportunities to set your own fun traditions with input from your children. This is a good thing!
Your new custody agreement says that this year you have your children on Thanksgiving but your ex has Christmas Eve/Day and you have Christmas afternoon and the next several days. You then remember that your sister always has a big family football game at her house with lots of family members, food and fun on Thanksgiving, and your ex hated going, which made for an uncomfortable gathering. Go!!! Have a good time with no guilt! This is your time to try new things, or try old familiar things with a new viewpoint. It's all in your attitude. If you approach it with a spirit of adventure, most likely your children will too. And remember, next year your ex will have Thanksgiving and you will have Christmas Eve/Day. Another chance to forge new traditions.
Remember all those Thanksgiving dinners when you cooked a big 'ol turkey dinner with the trimmings and 57 different side dishes, none of which your in-laws appreciated? You felt like all of your hard work was for nothing. Especially when everyone retreated to the living room in a food coma to watch football, leaving you to clean up. This year, go out to eat! Imagine the freedom that comes with not "having" to do anything you don't want to do. Remember to give thanks for the little things, including your hard working family law attorney :)