Presence over presents

Holiday Sale Store Christmas Tree PosterIt’s officially December; the year has truly flown by!  Now that it’s the holiday season, I’m trying to be more optimistic.  Actually, maybe optimistic isn’t really the word, maybe present. The last couple of years have been difficult, I wish I could explain it, but nothing seems personable anymore.  Everything is one big competition.  I know, I talked about this in a previous post, but it’s really been bothering me lately.  The holidays can either be super relaxing and a joyous time to be among the ones you love, or a giant cluster fuck…feelings that make you wish the month flew by as quickly as possible.

Being present is the one gift I truly want to give to my family, especially to the smaller children around me.  I don’t want my nieces and nephews growing up wondering why their aunt never really enjoyed Christmas.  Don’t get me wrong, it’s not that I don’t enjoy it, it’s that I miss the simplicity of the holidays when I was a little girl.  Maybe I was young and dumb, but taking the time to make my family cheesy Christmas presents that I knew wouldn’t last a long time meant a lot to me.  All of those ornaments … those macaroni ties I’m sure my dad got so tired of seeing, but loved to see our eyes light up when he opened it.  Of course, Christmas isn’t about gifts, it’s about love and family.  And yet, I can’t help but look around and see ads about buying your loved ones this, or getting that special $200 toy that will bring joy to a child’s tiny heart.  Whatever happened to those homemade, sentimental gifts?  Maybe I’m a fool to say it, but those are the ones I cherish over anything else.

We’ve spent so much time stressing about not having enough money or a certain amount of gifts for somebody, when it’s about quality, not quantity.  Trust me, your name could be on 25 gifts underneath the tree, and they could also be the shittiest things you’ve ever gotten.  And yet, imagine getting one gift … one memory you cherish forever.  That’s the value of a homemade gift: you sit back and admire the time and effort somebody put into something made specifically for you.

So this year, I’m aiming for Christmas to be different.  Less time worried about presents, and more time focused on my presence.

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