Sue was up early yesterday preparing Thanksgiving dinner. The house smelled wonderfully! For Ryan and myself, the morning was no different from any other. I take that back. There was one difference. I put the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade on so we could listen to it as we went through his therapies. By one o’clock we wrapped up and I pushed him around the house and up to the main level.
Ryan sat at one end of the dining room table. A seemingly empty chair sat at the other.
Yes, it would seem empty to anyone who might look in the window as they drove past our house. Perhaps even silly in its obvious out-of-place position. Some might even wonder why we don’t move it to another room to create more space. Funny how things are not always as they seem.[quote align=”right” color=”#999999″]”A celebration of thanks for the ages”.[/quote] That lone chair, in truth, was the seat for the Guest of Honor… you and everyone else who helped Ryan and our family. Collectively, known as “Team Diviney”. It held thousands-upon-thousands of people invited to our Thanksgiving dinner. I imagined what this feast must look like in some other dimension; with all the people around the table. I envisioned a king’s banquet hall with a table so long that it was impossible to see all the way to the other end. A celebration of thanks (and humility) for the ages. I wonder if in the history of civilization, has there ever been anything so festive? The pilgrims and natives (see how I am careful not to offend anyone here…) surely couldn’t compare. Let’s face it, I’m sure they didn’t have green bean casserole, candied yams, nor NFL football.
It was my way of mentally understanding the magnitude of what was happening in my dining room at that instance.
I don’t want to get too specific, but everyone was dressed in period clothing. Suffice it to say, you women looked F.I.N.E. in your bustiers and fancy hairdo’s!
In some ways I’m a bit of a romantic. Or, more likely, maybe I just want to be. Still, there’s no other meaning I can find to explain the details in my mind. You see, there were many open seats around the banquet table. This I could not deny. At first this made me wonder if people decided not to come. If, somewhere along the road, they departed.
It was a fleeting thought. The clarity of hope blew away the fog of despair.
These seats are waiting for others to join! Perhaps even people who you will bring to the table…
Without even a shred of proof it is so, I honestly believe this is the meaning. Otherwise, wouldn’t I have envisioned chairs stacked along the wall? Wouldn’t there be leafs removed from the table? What I can tell you is this… When I closed my eyes just before leaving the table to tend to the dishes, the banquet hall was more crowded. It was clear that, at least some of you, were sharing Ryan’s story at your dinner as well.
Please, tell me I am right to think this way.
We are sending out cards this holiday season. We started this last year, but quickly realized we didn’t have addresses for everyone; like those who donated through PayPal, U.S. Mail, drop-offs, meals, or the Wish List, to name a few.
You know what? Even if you got one before, would you please fill out the form below… just to be safe?
I know how humble everyone is, but if you didn’t get a card last year or helped Ryan through online contributions, would you please do this? It would mean a lot to me and my family to send you a card. If not for you, would you do it for us? It would be a huge time-saver. I know it’s not much compared to all you did, but it’s something we really want to do. My daughter, Kari, designed it and we’re excited to do this.
Just click fill out the simple form below and click the “sign up” button.[pdb_signup]
Kathryn Beggs Howlett via Facebook says
you are with us always too
Ginger Henry via Facebook says
Always up for a party, I envision a gathering more like Woodstock without the drugs and free love (well…maybe not, lol). Hmm, maybe more like Bonnaroo (or not), but a benefit for Ryan of some kind. This would be something big to put together, but happenings begin with dreams, and this is something to think about for sometime in the near future.
I know you enjoyed being together with your family over the Thanksgiving holiday. Wishing Kari a safe trip back to Morgantown. 🙂
As always, Love and prayers.
Great idea, Jo – with area bands, concessions, etc. hmmm….
We did share Ryan’s story with family and friends at our Thanksgiving table, bringing them into your home. Thank you for saving them seats at your table and serving such a wonderful banquet of love, Divineys!
Kathi Paschal Rabun via Facebook says
Thanks for including us all in your thanksgiving! Ryan you are thought of often with love and prayers!!
Hi Ken, first of all, I love the way you think!! The imagery of all of Team Diviney seated at the elegant banquet table, talking and raising toasts and laughing — sigh — it is a wonderful image to behold. For a moment I felt like I was in the Victorian era, with music playing and hearing the clink of crystal glasses.
But getting back to the heart of the matter, I do firmly believe Ryan’s story will continue to unfold, circulate, and generate new attention and draw even more members to Team Diviney. There’s no doubt in my mind about that, just as there’s no doubt of Ryan’s continued healing.
Thank you so much for all your kind thoughts — if you only knew what your family means to all of us — we have much gratitude in our hearts just to be a part of your lives. It is a privilege to be able to watch Ryan as he heals, and to also learn about the various techniques and therapies you develop to help him recover.
Love, caring and devotion are wonderous things — being able to watch your family demonstrate these qualities daily is uplifting. It gives a person new hope that anything is possible in life, as long as you have that foundation.
May you, Ryan, Sue and Kari enjoy this warm sunny day, and may your hearts be filled with peace. Team Diviney will always be surrounding you with prayers, help, strength and love…always.
Hugs, love, and blessings for a day filled with grace.
Gail Doyle says
Ken Next year ,NO empty seats..You know Team Diviney were all there!And all sharing our meal with you too
We will keep getting Ryan’s story out there and always keep him relevant in every way
Hoping to see you all soo
“The clarity of hope blew away the fog of despair.”
Poignant, and true. There are endless people at the Team Diviney table, all of them wanting to provide hope, help, and love.
Thinking of you – sending love from across town,
Carla, John, Natalie & Becky
Hi Family Diviney,
if you privately send me your mailing address I will make a holiday dvd for you to play.
its christmas music videos, comedy clips and musicals.
That sounds wonderful! Our address is 21092 Carthagena Ct., Ashburn, VA 20147
Jen Lovelace says
I see endless empty seats, all waiting to be filled with those people who do not yet know Ryan, but will become a part of Team Diviney this year. There are 7 Billion people in the world, right? We need to keep spreading the word of your amazing son and family. Ken, you were absolutely right, your family was an important part of our day of thanks yesterday. I sent you, Sue and Kari a private message for more detail. With all my love~ Jen