I wrote the following blog last year. Things have changed since then because of the pandemic, haven’t they? I think the basic message, though, is still a very good one. Instead of thinking of “being together” as being physically together, however, think of being together as being connected emotionally. We are still the most important gift we can give to others. Even if we can’t be together physically, we can still give of ourselves. We can still give our time, attention, and love. It just needs to be from a distance this year. It doesn’t mean that the people we love mean any less to us, it just means that we need to be careful to keep those we love (and those we don’t even know) safe from the virus. Next year we can go back to “normal.” This year, we can still be close emotionally while we are physically distant.
I have been giving quite a bit of thought to gifts and wrappings. What’s important, of course, is the gift. The wrapping makes it prettier, but the wrapping doesn’t have any substance. It’s the gift that has significance. If we don’t have any wrapping, we can still give the gift. If we don’t have a gift, though, it doesn’t matter how much wrapping we have, we still don’t have a gift to give.
Over the holidays I sometimes think that we get so caught up in the “wrappings” that we forget about the importance of the “gifts” we give. The greatest gift we can give each other, of course, is ourselves—our time, attention, and love. Being together is what is important, not the location, decorations, food, or even the gifts we purchase. All these add to the fun and festivities, but they are still wrappings. The gift is being together.
If you enjoy all the wrappings, and enjoy doing the wrapping, then continue and have fun with it. If, however, you are stressed about making sure that all the “wrappings” are perfect, relax and focus on the “gift” of being with those you love. After all, it is the gifts that are kept and the wrappings that are tossed.