Cue the music, this is where the evil Disney queen comes in, right? A lovely family day, pleasant meal, fun opening gifts. And 24 hours later, a comment…. not malicious, not meant to draw blood, just an offhand comment “I didn’t get anything I asked for – oh, except the keurig.”
Why does that hurt so much? Maybe because I traveled halfway around the world (twice, once in each direction) and excitedly chose gifts that I knew my family would love? Maybe because I listened to offhand comments during the year about “I wish I had one of those’ and made it my task to get one under the tree. Maybe because I was really excited to see the reactions to the gifts from our travels. Even so, when THE LIST was delivered on December 14th I still found a way to get a couple of things from the LIST under the tree too, lest there be disappointment. Alas, the items were the wrong size, or the wrong color, or the wrong whatever. And I am left with “I didn’t get anything I wanted this year”.
Obviously somewhere along the line, this became all about me. MY gifts were rejected, blah blah blah. So was I really giving to give for the joy of giving? Or was I secretly aiming for best present-giver EVER!!! OMG Beth NOBODY can pick a present like you can!! Or, I suspect, the truth is somewhere in the middle. I was excited when I shopped this year, and sad when it was met with “I didn’t get…” but dang that probably sums up my whole childhood. I was no doubt one of those kids who had a treasure trove under the tree and then pouted because Bethany got an Easy Bake Oven and I didn’t.
Maybe it’s just the human condition - CLOSE to living a grateful life but just not quite there yet. So, I am back to gratitude again. I have a fabulous (albeit a bit goofy) family – my mother is still living (many of my friends cannot say that) – I know where my children are – God has blessed me with a beautiful marriage centered around Him, and all that it brings. I have a dog who adores me and a cat who tolerates me (which is adoration in cat-ese). I have a beautiful home, that my family is happy and comfortable in during holiday gatherings. And I do have everything I wanted…. a loving husband, a healthy mother, adult children that like me, and a granddaughter who is pretty sure I walk on water. And, above all, a loving God, who sent His most precious gift that I might find grace in moments like the one I had earlier today.
Merry Christmas everybody.