It doesn’t matter if you’re a schoolgirl with her first boyfriend or an adult married many, many years with a house of kids: We all read a lot into what our significant other does or does not slip under the Christmas tree, especially when it comes to the gift with our name on it.
Many a union has been tested by a vacuum or microwave proudly presented (especially when said appliance was not on their partner’s wish list).
Many a case of young love has blossomed into something more from a thoughtful unexpected gift given, especially one that says: I know who you are, and I love that about you.
Through my life, I had always fared well on both the gifts I gave to sweethearts (though the guys may beg to differ) and to the ones I received. That is until college when the gift of an ink pen drove my boyfriend of nine months to deliver a long lecture on the ills of trying to buy a person’s love. (It was a pen! Not even that nice of one!)
That holiday debacle could have soured me on the romantic idea of sweethearts exchanging gifts, but what can I say: I’m a romantic at heart.
So for both beaus and those I love, I continue to buy, wrap, and give, hoping on my best days that I will give the gift that will show the recipient, if only for a moment, how highly I hold her or him in regard. I have found this has little to do with the price tag and a lot to do with the thought that went into the gift.
And I encourage you to remember that this season as you go to buy presents. We all just want to be seen and to be known by those we love.
And a gift, well chosen—be it a river rock from your first trip together or a love letter tucked into a favorite book—can do just that.
What is the best gift a sweetheart has ever given you?