TSU is not above regifting, so we’re regifting you with a post from last year. Because who couldn’t become even better at gifting? ‘Tis the season!
Gifts make me anxious. Not receiving them, although fixing your face after receiving a stuffed animal for your 35th birthday (Um, about that, Dad…) does come with its own challenges, but mostly I mean giving gifts.
Giving makes me anxious.
Giving you a plate of food I just cooked and worrying that you might not like it, giving you advice I think you really need to hear but aren’t sure how you’re going to take it, but giving gifts may top both of those for me.
I only have a couple of gifts left to buy for Christmas, but there’s still a couple of presents I haven’t figured out.
And I hate to miss the mark.
I get all excited when someone starts rummaging through the gift bag I’ve handed them or tears into the wrapping paper I carefully taped. I hold my breath and sometimes what I get in return is “Oh.” Pause “Thanks.”
I was infamously bad with this when giving gifts to boyfriends. The shirt that vastly underestimated his defensive end size. The workbag that was needed, but way too practical. The wineglasses from Crate and Barrel that were better suited to a housewarming present rather than the first Christmas with your new beau. And I’ve tried to bury the deep disappointment of decorating a boyfriend’s house for the holidays complete with a sexy holiday outfit and Diane Krall’s “I’ll Be Home for Christmas” playing in the background only to receive a “What is all this?” as my reward.
Damn. Really missed.
But, I keep trying because when it goes right, it feels amazing. The outfit my sister didn’t know I’d purchased for her from her favorite vintage store, the rare cigars for the boyfriend who rushed to get out his best bottle of cognac to accompany a smoke, the vintage Salvatore Ferragamo sweater coat that my mother looks amazing in.
I love when the person I’m gifting opens up the present to receive the very thing they’ve been wanting all year or wanting for multiple years or just mentioned offhand a week ago.
I like for my gifting to go right because I want the people I care for to know that I see them, that I see what they love and what they get joy from and what makes them tick and what gets them up in the morning. I want them to know that I think who they are, just as they are, is pretty great.
And yes, I also want that gift glory of having given them their equivalent of the Golden Ticket.
So for these last couple of gifts I have to buy, I’m going to try to ask myself a few questions to get me to that higher level of gifting:
1. What do they talk about incessantly, like maybe too much, with more enthusiasm than I might even understand?
2. What are they a little ashamed to admit that they like (“Well, you remember that show Blossom? I binge watched it this weekend…”)?
3. Where do they want to be in their life in a year and is there something you could give them to get them there (maybe just no workbags)?
So, whether your gifting holiday is past (Hanukkah) or yet to come (Christmas, Kwanzaa, Yule, Ramadan), I leave you with this seasonal wish: May your gifts make every receiver wide-eyed with joy and may you never go all out to create a holiday extravaganza that your significant other doesn’t appreciate.
Need some more gifting help? Check these out: