Every Christmas, I think of my grandmother. She was a generous woman with holes in her pockets. No matter how tight her budget was, she would borrow money to spoil me and my brother with cars and dolls, books and chocolates.
When we got older, whatever we gave her, she would regift it later. She never really kept anything for herself. Her house was full of little treasures, carefully guarded through the years: souvenirs from her trips to Europe, books on knitting and foreign magazines, novels, fancy clothes and shoes carefully organized in her closet that smelled like fresh soap. She had plenty of jewelry that she rarely wore and a cosmetics cabinet I wasn’t allowed to explore.
When she passed away, my parents cleaned up her apartment and gave away her possessions. The unintentional life lesson she taught me still guides me today – especially when I go Christmas shopping: in life we don’t own anything – neither our objects, neither our relationships, neither our body. Everything was given to us, borrowed and will be taken away. The essence is to savour what we have with gratitude, then give it away.
My grandma’s generosity wasn’t about the objects she was offering, it was more about the intention of love. When she was giving, she’d treasure the memory of the reciever’s reaction in her heart.
If your list is checked and packed, just imagine you were a little child offering those gifts to your friends and family. Then cherish the memory of their receiving and be grateful.
Happy shopping and giving!