Since the show “Quantum Leap”, I have always had a big crush on Scott Bakula. Who could resist Scott’s handsome smile, great personality, clever sense of humor, sex appeal and kindness? He has always had a very special place in my heart (and in yours’, too, I am sure). Scott played many different female characters who had to deal with sexual discrimination, wardrobe problems, sexual harassment, trying to break the glass ceiling, and of those trying to keep the “peace” in their families. He truly “gets” women and our lives because he has literally “walked in our shoes”.
As Dwayne Pride on the hit show “NCIS/ New Orleans”, Scott offers 10 pieces of life wisdom that we can all empathize with. Maybe you can use these 10 tips to survive Thanksgiving with your family as you try to keep the ”peace” during the often very stressful holiday season. Just might give being thankful a whole new meaning.
- “Family is what you make of it. Sometimes it is simple; most times it is not”. We all know that holidays can bring out the “not so best” in families. Just breathe and try to stay out of the fracas. You could be in trouble no matter what you say so just do as I do; I just sit by after the meal and make snowflakes. This keeps my hands busy so that I can resist smacking someone who says something really stupid. For this, I am thankful.
- “There is no way around pain. All that you can do is make friends with it, feel it, and move through it”. Holidays bring back many memories of those close to us that we have lost. They are not “missing” but merely living in a different dimension. We all miss them yet we can still smile when we think of them. I miss my Dad a lot but can see him gobbling down plates of food. Sometimes I even feel his presence in the room. I also miss him always setting people straight who had weird ideas about things. He would shake his head and comment about their words with his words, ”now c’mon”. He would have had a lot to say about our new president elect, I am sure. If they start their right-wing political rants this Thanksgiving, I will leave and take my desserts with me, too. For the choice of staying or leaving I am thankful.
- “Somehow the past always manages to catch up with you”. If you did something stupid, the karma can and will really get you. If you did nothing stupid, your past remains just that- the past. We have all been stupid but most of us have only been mildly stupid so we are safe. I speak these words from experience and am thankful that my actions were not too stupid to cause bad karma.
- “Maybe you just feel like you are standing on a ledge…but if you talk to me I can pull you back”. I have never ever felt this bad about anything in my life but know people who have. I have “talked them off the ledge” even though the person causing their pain really “had it coming”. I reminded them about letting karma handle it even though running that awful person over with a truck might have felt better at the moment. Always pull them back. You need them in your life and are thankful for them everyday. And believe it or not, they are thankful for you. I am thankful that I can be there for others.
- “Believe me, I know how flawed the system can be but taking matters in your own hands in no better”. Sometimes “justice “ is not justice. We all read things that make no sense. A child killed by an unsecured gun in the home is just one example. No one is charged and the gun discharged causing an “accidental” death. That is just lunacy. Charge the owner of the gun with a crime and have them serve some time. That will help them feel the “accidental” pain that those parents must feel. Sometimes the system just sucks. For this I am not thankful at all.
- “I’m the father; you are the daughter. It’s my job to worry about you”. Pride and his daughter and ex-wife are always at odds about something even though things seem to be going pretty well. We all want the past to be different than it really was, but this is not at all possible as we know. Always accept relatives who care about you. Love them even though they might be annoying sometimes. I am always thankful for family who worry, mildly, about me.
- “It’s not about the warrant; it’s about the person in there”. Every person matters in life; there are no throw away people, even though you might have “thrown away” an ex who deserved it. People make bad decisions all the time; it’s just human nature. But do not let your bad decisions get you in trouble like the person whose name was listed on the warrant. I am thankful for my abundance of common sense that has always kept me out of trouble, at least most of the time.
- “The instant that I heard my daughter’s heartbeat she became my whole world”. All parents can totally relate to this. As the auntie, I too was totally smitten as I held each of my nieces and nephews for the first time. They became my whole world. Today, I am thankful for them all and look forward to watching them all grow up. Being auntie rules because you can always send them back to Mom and Dad when they are naughty. I am so thankful for this “auntie rule”.
- “Those who want to tear us apart quote, Booth. I quote Lincoln”. How did he know that these words would ring true in our world today? Lincoln always took the high road and would probably not be too surprised at the disrespectful, deplorable behavior of today. He saw plenty of this in his time, too. I believe that “no respect for anything but what I say” is not the norm, not now, not ever; nor was it for Lincoln either. He made hard choices in his life and I am so very thankful for great American leaders like him.
- "Tough upbringing does not a career criminal make”. I totally agree. Many people I know, had very little as a child, or were raised by a single parent, yet persevered and became model citizens and great leaders. We all know of someone who fits this description to a “T”. When life offers you lemons, make lemonade or better yet a lemon merange pie. For that pie I am thankful.
So, this Thanksgiving, read Scott/Dwayne’s 10 pieces of life wisdom and be ever thankful for the great feisty men and women in your life. Tell them how much they really mean to you. They may already know but hearing it from you again might just be what they want to hear this time of year.