Falls Church Students Give Thanks During the Holidays

By Joseph Kratz, Staff Writer

With the leaves changing colors, and the temperatures
dropping, we turn our attention to our favorite fall holidays,
from National Eat a Cranberry Day (November 23) to
Thanksgiving. Thanksgiving is a holiday meant to commemorate
the successful cooperation of the Native American
tribes and the Pilgrims that landed at Plymouth, Massachusetts.
While for them it was a celebration of a good harvest,
and optimistic outlooks on their futures, it has come to be
a time to realize the opportunities you have been afforded,                                                                                                         as well as the people and things you are
thankful to have.
Falls Church High is a melting pot
of ethnicities and races, a celebration of
cultural diversity. Of all the places to ask
people about what makes them thankful,
Falls Church may be the best survey
sample. While small children may express
thankfulness for unimportant, material
objects, and adults might say they are
thankful for abstract concepts or ideas as a
way to encompass all the things they find
important. High school students provide
a perfect middle ground between juvenile
innocence and geriatric wisdom. Through
social media I asked students in grades
ranging from brand-new freshman, to our
beloved senior class.
One of the things that was a common
theme among all the people I asked
was a thankfulness for the privilege that
they are able to live where they do, to have
the schools they do, as well as having the
rights they have as Americans. Almost all
of them were also thankful for their friends
and families.
“I’m very thankful for the people
who have stuck by me for a long time,” said
Max Miller (12). They also gave thanks for traditions, or even
things that may seem insignificant to someone
else, but mean a lot for them.
Elizabeth Nguyen (9) expressed her
thanks for NFL football, saying, “My family
watched the games together right after
dinner because my aunts wouldn’t let us go
shopping any time before 12:00 on [Black]
Friday morning, so it has become a tradition
Now as we move closer and closer to
a sudden rapid-fire succession of holidays,
religious and secular, many people become
more acutely aware of the many gifts they
have. Everyone who expressed their thankfulness
said that as the holidays approach,
they become more attuned to the things
they have to be thankful for, because the
many things that they may take for granted,
that others may not have, are more obvious
as we spend time with family and friends.
A great example of this increased
awareness of thankfulness is obvious when
I spoke to Henry Dralle (9) when he said,
“I think I am more thankful around Thanksgiving
because it puts a deeper meaning to
things for me. Everybody is thankful for
something and when everybody has that attitude
at a general time it sets a certain atmosphere that otherwise wouldn’t exist.