Just Me

Just Me
Look,I'm just sayin'

Friday, November 25, 2016

giving the gift

 With Christmas coming we start to think of what we may receive. What gifts await ? The excitement builds to a fever pitch, or at least it did when I was a child. I don't think that same excitement exists anymore, the kids today are far too aware. Setting that aside, each year the expectations diminish. That is a product of maturity. We begin to think about others more than ourselves. At some point we become aware. We become concerned not with what we are getting, but with what we are giving. Striving to give the perfect gifts to please others. The enjoyment is in seeing their smiles and maybe even fulfilling a wish they had. That is what brings you happiness. The joy is in the giving.
 I was thinking about this as I did a little shopping. The grandkids are growing up and there isn't much they want. That is simply because there isn't much they don't already have. It just could be that they are a bit spoiled in that regard. Or, it could be the result of living in a credit oriented world. It is easy to charge the things you want. When I was growing up there was Sears and Roebuck or JC Penny that offered those revolving charge accounts. They were the primary source for Santa. Took the rest of the year to pay for it. But that was in the nineteen sixties. Not many folks had charge cards and the like. Only the very well to do would have those. As a result we didn't get much in the way of " luxury " items during the year. There was your birthday but that wouldn't net but one or two gifts. You had to really consider what you wanted before saying anything. Pick out that one thing you just had to have. So now I find it difficult to find anything to give them that will elicit that response I want. And yes, I want to see that look on their face and a twinkle in their eye. That is the magic of Christmas morning. That; how did you know this is what I wanted, even when I didn't know it look ? You know, the gift that they don't just sit aside immediately. That one that captures their attention.
 I learned a tradition from my mom. I have mentioned this tradition in blogs before. The tradition is listening to the Christmas tree. Turn out the lights, except for the tree of course, and anything making  noise. Then just sit and look at your tree, taking in the details. Listen closely, the tree begins to whisper. It may speak of the past the present or the future. The important thing is to listen. I have learned that the gifts under the tree are not what was important. Whatever gifts are under that tree today will soon be memories. The only thing that lasts is what we leave behind. Those are the true gifts we received, those memories. We don't remember the objects, although they may be a reminder, what we remember is the emotion.
 I long for the days when less was more. The more was the thought that went into those gifts. Yes, you could call it love. But we did spend quite a bit more time thinking about the person that gift was intended for. When we could only give a few, each one had to count. Now it seems like quantity is what is important. Yes, when I was a kid, we counted. I'd like to tell you otherwise but that would be less than truthful. How many did I get compared to what my brothers or sister got ? I outgrew that when I became aware of the cost of things. Yeah, about the time Santa came into serious question.  Then I looked for what I really wanted. If I got that it was tremendous. Funny, I don't remember ever being disappointed. I'm certain I didn't get all I asked for. The truth is, I did get everything I needed. Mom and Dad never disappointed.
 Well, the grandkids are grown and don't expect a thing. Asking them for a Christmas list you are met with a smile. Morgan wrote a few things down and Mark just said, Santa knows what I want. It appears that they have learned a thing or two about Christmas. They are not so concerned with receiving anymore. Oh, I'm sure they expect a few of the important things in life to teenagers. I'm as equally certain that Santa knows exactly what they want. As for grandpa and grandma we are just gonna wing it. The thing is we will give them what we always have, all our love. It was the gift I received growing up and one I tried to give to my children. The grandkids deserve that and more. Maybe one day the grandkids will sit and listen to that Christmas tree and hear the whispers. Those whispers always speak of love.