As we all piled into our old slightly beat-up Chevy Tahoe, which is now a bit more slightly beaten-up since I’ve inherited it, I became overwhelmed with a sense of dejavu. My dad at the wheel, with his seat pushed so far back my little sister has the leg space of a squirrel, my mom in the passenger seat scanning over countless People magazines, and me; looking out the window at the world as it whizzes by. Haven’t I been here before? What is it about family road trips that make me feel like I’m forever stuck in a time capsule?
Time ticks by slowly, and I can only survive my sister’s singing for so long. As a teenager I feel like I should be doing teenager things like listening to angsty music on my iPod, texting my friends, or catching up on some serious Facebook stalking. However, most of the time, I just catch myself dozing off.
As I drift back and forth between what can be pretty closely compared to unconsciousness, I can’t help but wonder what lies ahead for this family outing. Is my dad going to walk into another restaurant with his fly unzipped? Is my mom going to make us take at least 3 rest-room stops to accommodate her tiny bladder? Is my little sister going to sprawl out over the entire back seat so that I have nowhere to rest my head? Most of these situations are probably inevitable, but you never really know when you’re traveling with my family.
It takes a lot to put up with constant bickering over which radio station to listen to, how high the air conditioner should be turned on, and which restaurant is best to stop for dinner. However, when I take a second to really look at the people around me, I realize that I couldn’t have chosen a better group if I tried.
After all, Thanksgiving is right around the corner and I would say family is a pretty big component of the holiday. Granted, nobody’s family is perfect, but they shouldn’t have to be. Imperfections make us human, and being human causes imperfections, so how could a person’s entire family ever come close to being “perfect”? It couldn’t. So this Thanksgiving I’m not going to wish for my dad to be less embarrassing, my mom to be less involved, or my sister to be less hyper. I’m just going to be thankful that they are in my life, and thankful that no matter what I can always be proud to call them my family.