Thankful – Today and Everyday
I am always thankful for family at Thanksgiving. This year, I find myself particularly thankful for my mother. She turned 90 in September. We had a wonderful celebration of that milestone, and we reminisced with family and friends about many wonderful years together. In October, my mother fell, broke her hip, and had partial hip replacement surgery. No small feat for anyone, let alone a 90-year-old. I am happy to say she is recovering nicely, but it reminded me how fragile life is. I am deeply grateful for her recovery. I am also thankful this season for good medical care. My mother was in a new, thoroughly up-to-date hospital with talented and caring doctors and nurses. I knew she was in good hands, and I was grateful for it every day. She is now in a rehabilitation facility, and I am equally grateful for the expertise and care she is receiving there.
This episode makes me keenly aware of how privileged my family is to have access to top-notch medical care. I know that many of our brothers and sisters throughout the world do not have such ready access to good health care. For example, globally, more than 300,000 women die each year from causes related to pregnancy and childbirth. In order to reduce illness and death among expectant and new mothers and their children, many of whom are in rural areas, Episcopal Relief & Development supports local initiatives that train health workers and community volunteers to actively engage with families and monitor child health. We are saving lives by encouraging pregnant women to seek prenatal care, promoting nutrition for mother and child and ensuring that babies receive the recommended vaccinations.
This Thanksgiving, I give thanks not only for the medical care that is available to my mother but also for the health care available to women and children worldwide because of the tireless work of Episcopal Relief & Development‘s partners and community volunteers. I am also grateful for everyone whose financial support makes this work possible. We could not do it without you.
Thank you for your support, and Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!
Josephine Hicks is Vice President for Episcopal Church Programs at Episcopal Relief & Development.
First image: Josephine with her mother on Thanksgiving last year.; Second Image: Mother holding her baby in Zambia.
Photo Courtesy: Episcopal Relief & Development