Day 18: The Present is Present

Now that the wishlist is finally out of the way, I’m stuck here wondering why we even give gifts to begin with. Is it because the wise men brought some to Jesus? So that gives us an excuse to gift each other? Is it a word of mouth tradition that just kept going? Was it just another capitalist motive for big companies to push sales?

It could be all of the above. Normally, I’d have a general answer for the origin of something like this because I would have read about it as a child but nothing comes to mind so I’m here to reflect.

Now there’s nothing inherently wrong with giving gifts during the holiday season. However, I find it so problematic that we amount so much pressure to giving them. You stress about finding the right one and you stress about meeting the feedback when you are disappointingly unable to find it.

In a lot of Christmas storylines, there’s always something about scrambling to get the one perfect gift or a child worrying they won’t get that perfect gift. But it always ends with the perfect gift somehow always falling into the kid’s lap. Where’s the story where the kid doesn’t get the right gift but is still happy anyway? Why is that not being emphasized? Instead we’re all putting this insane amount of pressure to give the best one or the perfect one. Why isn’t the presence ever truly emphasized as present enough?

I don’t know. This is a lot of rambling but it’s mostly a reflection of the usual Christmas shenanigans I see on Facebook, on TV and even at home. Gifts are such a big deal for some reason that other kids feel a tinge of resent if they don’t get as many as another. How is that spirited? Anyway, let me know what you think about this in the comments!


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