If you are positive your husband gets you the worst Christmas gifts ever, I’m excited to hear whether you can beat my own “worst Christmas gifts ever” story. The first year we were together, the Very Tall Man whom I love harder than hard cider gave me the following for Christmas:
1 – Set of knives
1 – Package of socks
1 – Set of 4 wine glasses
1 – Can of pineapple (That’s right. A wrapped can of pineapple.)
I made a big deal about how much I loved those gifts, which he wrapped all by himself by the way. It probably went something like, “Oh the things I will chop & dice whilst wearing my socks and planning for the future of the 16 oz. of crushed pineapple I now own outright.”
Inside I was shocked. Hurt. Confused. This is the same guy I knew to be incredibly generous and thoughtful, and yet his Christmas gift skills seemed equal to that of a 90 year old grandmother who keeps her Christmas candy dish filled with Luden’s Cough Drops, half sticks of gum and various peppermints she’s gotten for free at various restaurants throughout the year.
It took me months before I found the courage to ask him about the gifts.
“You kept saying you didn’t want anything. But, I remembered you’d mentioned several times how badly you needed a new set of knives, and how much you loved the feel of brand new socks. I got you the wine glasses because you tend to break them like they are disposable.”
And the pineapple? Turns out it was a reference to an obscure joke I’d made about pineapple months earlier.
In the words of my 5-year-old Grandson, I felt like a real Poop-Doodie Head. He’d been so thoughtful, and I’d missed it completely.
I learned TWO valuable lessons from our first Christmas together that I’m confident will help if your husband gives the worst Christmas gifts ever. Trust me.
#1 – If you are a well-known Christmas saint who routinely says things like, “Don’t get me anything,” or “There is nothing I want,” you should go ahead and crawl down from that lofty, saintly place and just be honest. I spent a lot of years trying to be the Mother Theresa of receiving gifts and it was actually the most selfish thing I could have done.
When someone cares for you and wants to experience the joy of seeing your face light up on Christmas morning, it’s a singularly “jerk” move to rob them of that feeling. Therefore, if you are asked what you want ANSWER THE QUESTION! Make a list. You’re not a bad human woman for doing so.
#2 – If you get socks, or a vacuum cleaner, or your very own can of crushed pineapple, remember that Husband is giving you a GIFT. Yes it may suck lint-covered lemon drops, (which coincidentally are also in your Grandmother’s candy dish), but there is thoughtfulness behind it. Accept it graciously and see it for what it is… love.
So to recap:
You won’t get extra points on your permanent record if you lie and tell someone who loves you that you don’t want anything for Christmas. Receiving a gift joyfully is a kindness you give to your husband (and everyone else). That’s why it’s better to GIVE than RECEIVE.
Sher Bailey is a writer in the Midwest who believes the power of humor, Mod Podge, and grandkids can fix most problems in life. You can find her at SherBailey.com.