‘Tis the season to be thinking about gifts, giving and sharing. Kudos to Wendy for hosting our Carnival & how appropriate for our topic to be about gifts and giving!
In looking back over past Christmases and remembering the gifts I’ve received, many stand out in my mind. Some for an assortment of reasons but the ones I’m remembering today are the ones which have me helped most as a chronic. Truly, my idea of what constitutes a gift has changed. A gift used to be about what was spent or about the monetary value of what I wanted. In my 20’s I would ask my parents to buy things I couldn’t afford for myself, either for myself or the kids. In my 30’s I would struggle to save enough in order to spend enough, which is so ironic now. Even all those years ago I was fighting an uphill battle which led to where I am now. The “magic” year I was forced to see what gifts truly are was the year I turned forty–which is also the year I became a card-carrying chronic.
Since then, some of the “things” I’ve received are priceless. A few of them are practical & a few are frivolous; some from others, some are gifts to myself. During my first chronic Christmas, money was REALLY tight & we didn’t have a Christmas tree. My friend Cassie gave us a tree, which I still use today.
My Sweetie finds crazy, creative gifts & has a most eclectic sense of giving; he casually piles everything together in a cardboard box & I NEVER know what I’m going to find….. I might pull a jar opener (highly recommend ), a crazy cat lady action figure (really) and a string of beautiful pearls out of the same box. The whole time he’s sitting there wearing that grin….He always makes me laugh & he doesn’t doubt me, even when he doesn’t understand… Best gifts ever.
My mom helps with practical needs and asks what I could really use. I love getting practical gifts–it feeds my inner frugalista! I have everything I need and most of my “wants”.
In the long run–the gifts I appreciate the most are the things we can’t stuff in a box. The gifts of time, honesty, patience, awesome jobs. My Graceful Agony sisters, friends who understand when I have to cancel, a sweetie who doesn’t chew his arm off to keep from snuggling just ONE MORE MINUTE, supportive family, a warm secure home & a fat, happy dog
Gifts come in all shapes & sizes. I’m spending this season being aware & grateful….That’s my holiday gift to myself!