Monday, April 15, 2024 -
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As Thanksgiving approached this year, I wondered how I would be able to feel a sense of gratitude, and hominess, when our brothers and sisters are being held hostage in Gaza, when our ancestral homeland Israel is under fire, when our people are being attacked verbally and physically around the world.

Ironically, though, as I started planning for what is my favorite American holiday, I began to recognize how much I have to be grateful for.

It started with realizing that the overwhelming emotion I feel when I see hordes of hateful anti-Israel, anti-Zionist, anti-Jewish protesters on the streets is gratitude. Yes, gratitude. Not only for these people showing the world just exactly who they are, but gratitude that I am not one of them. That I don’t discard human life like these protestors who refuse to acknowledge Hamas’ evil, and who choose to ignore that toddlers, teens, young adults, adults and the elderly have been taken hostage.

Then the feelings of gratitude grew.

I’m grateful for our president, and for Colorado’s elected leaders, most of whom have expressed solidarity with Israel. (This doesn’t, however, include my own state representative who, in this conflict, has substantiated the concerns the Jewish community had about her candidacy. While Elisabeth Epps continues to advocate for Palestinians — to the point of disrupting the House chamber — I haven’t seen a single mention of concern for Israel or Jews, and when, as a constituent, I left her a detailed message explaining my personal connection to this conflict and concerns, I never heard back. Everyone in House District 6, please remember this in 2024.)

I’m grateful for the excellent medical care I receive from my practitioners.

I’m grateful for our local Jewish community, finding ways to connect and support each other during this challenging time.

I’m grateful for the words of kindness I have received from friends and acquaintances who aren’t Jewish.

More than anything, I am so grateful to be part of the Jewish people. We are unbelievably resilient and so deeply connected to one another.

When the weather turns cold and the aromas of Thanksgiving fill the air, I allow myself to revel in all the familiar sights and smells of the holiday and, most importantly, remember the true meaning of the day — gratitude.

Shana Goldberg may be reached at [email protected].

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