Wednesday, December 2, 2009

On giving

I just put this handcrafted ornament of a brown-skinned baby resting on a cream-colored moon onto our live Christmas tree. I forgot to ask where the item was made when I specifically chose the cutest baby for the free ornament I was being gifted for signing up on Ten Thousand Villages' mailing list. I love this fair trade store and the stories that come with each handmade item. Even though I hadn't purchased it and don't know where it was made, alas, it was Ezra's first Christmas ornament and that made it perfect and that would be its story.

On this past Sunday, we bought our Christmas tree and Elijah had to have a nutcracker ornament and one for Ezra as well. I'm usually pretty conservative with spending. But it's Christmas, how could I resist--well sometimes the price tag can aid in the resistance. When we got home I wrote their names and the year on their respective ornaments and Elijah placed them on the tree side by side. My heart just overflowed with joy.

My mother gave me this gift of a new personalized Christmas ornament every year tradition. I'm grateful to be able to pass the gift to my children. And if Elijah asks for a different ornament next week for 2009, it will be his and this year I'll buy two.

It is now Wednesday night and I don't know why I just got the baby's ornament on the tree, but it was magical for me to place it right beside two of Elijah's baby's first Christmas ornaments. I can't find the words to express what I feel about finding ornaments for both kids, shopping for both boys, loving both boys, seeing Elijah in Ezra's face, seeing them love each other. My spirit just rejoices at these amazing gifts.

This love, Christmas energy translates into a very weird phenomena for me, I just want to give to everyone. I almost bought roses from the lady at the stoplight before I hit the beltway as I left work. I felt bad for her trying walking in the cold, drizzly rain and I wanted her to be encouraged. I just convinced myself that I should make the purchase next time. I want to buy small poinsettias or delectable chocolates for my favorite co-workers and for those I think could use a pick me up. However, I don't want to send my bank account into shock and I don't want people to start feeling like they have to return the idea. I want nothing in return, but to know I helped put a smile on someone's face or made their day. I don't know how to do this successfully without waking that horrific demon of obligation and concern for equity that lies within us all.

I want to be able to put an ornament on someone's emotional tree and light a candle in their memory that they were special enough to be thought of in this unexpected way.

As I've been given so much...
I just want to give a little bit to everyone.

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