The preparation for Christmas, as usual, has left me feeling drained and overwhelmed.
I don’t mind spending money on important things, and the people I love fall especially into that category, but it can’t be denied that the time leading up to Christmas — the time in which gifts are bought and wrapped — is an extreme assault on the senses in our Western society. Everything becomes rushed and loud: advertisements scream out in sound and color from the radio, t.v., and billboards; the streets are full of hectic drivers; and even the people are constantly in an exasperated hurry, running from one shop or Christmas party to the next.
It is easy in this frenzy of wrapping paper and ribbons to forget the classic Christmas cliché which is supposed to create the warm and fuzzy feelings associated with this time of year: gift giving. And I mean real gift giving, to the people who really need it.
I had forgotten that this kind of gift giving was even possible until my therapist suggested I give a leftover turkey he had from a charity event to a family I know who could really use it. He then proceeded to buy carrots, potatoes, a turnip, a sweet potato, ingredients for homemade stuffing, chocolate, peanut butter, jam, toilet paper, and a fifty dollar gift card to the grocery store — all for me to give to this same family. He even included his own homemade cranberry sauce.
I didn’t know anyone still gave so relentlessly, and so passionately.
While he packed all of these purchases into the trunk of my car, he turned to me and said, “Just think, none of this was bought in a mall.”
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