It’s that time of year again, the holiday season is upon us. This year’s holiday season is already on the way to being different than any other year before. For military families who are living away from home, however, the holidays are a difficult time any given year. 

Thanksgiving is a holiday that can be particularly difficult if you are not only living away from home but living outside of the U.S. as well. Thanksgiving is a uniquely American holiday, and that is no more evident than when you are living in a different country. To everybody else, that last Thursday in November is just another day. But, for us, it’s a day to be celebrated with friends, family, food, and football. 

The fact that those who aren’t American around you don’t understand your loneliness and what you are missing just makes it that much harder. However, it doesn’t have to be a totally miserable day. You don’t have to chalk it up to a loss just because you are away from your country for the holiday. 

Celebrate the day no matter what country you are living in. Make it a holiday in your house, even if it’s not one anywhere else. Scour the grocery store shelves and find anything and everything that is close to what you would usually have for Thanksgiving. Then get in the kitchen and make it your day!

Being away from home at the holidays is never easy. But, if you can make it a special day and embrace making it your own celebration, you’ll get through it … And who knows, you might even enjoy it!