It’s December. How did that happen? I’m not ready for the holidays. My stomach cramps just thinking about holiday shopping. It means time away from my computer, from my encroaching deadline. It means fighting crowds, dealing with rude shoppers and frustrated sales clerks. It means agonizing over what to buy for those we love. I hate that. Gifts should be meaningful. Not something we buy in a rush. Not something we purchase out of duty.
Last week a Wal-mart worker was crushed to death by shoppers obsessed with a Black Friday sale. That sickened me on so many levels. It makes me want to rebel against the modern-day version of Christmas. Against materialism. It makes me want to dig deep and adopt the true spirit of Christmas. The spirit of giving from the heart.
This urge is intensified by the sobering reality of this nation’s economic dilemma. So much hardship. Hardship suffered by some I personally know and/or love.
A dear friend of mine sent me a handmade Christmas pin, a charity inspired project. She sends me one every year. I treasure it. Because she made it. Because it’s lovely. Because it comes from the heart.
This year all of my Christmas gifts will come from the heart. Whether personal or professional. Self-made crafts or confections, maybe a personalized story or donations to charities. Sorry. No scarves this year unless I knit them myself.
I hope my friends and loved ones won’t be disappointed. I hope they’ll embrace the same old-fashioned ideals as me.
It’s the thought that counts.
What about you? Do you feel differently this year about gift giving? Yes? No? Why?