The Gift of Giving

Did I ever tell you how much I look forward to my birthday?  Most women my age don’t.  Sure, it’s the passing of another year and, yes, I may not bounce back quite as fast from a night of drinking as I did when I was younger, but the fact is I love my birthday.  Why? It’s the only day of the year I get presents.  I know. I know. I sound just like a five-year old little girl on Christmas morning, screaming out at the top of her lungs, “Where are my toys?”  But I can’t help it.  There’s just something about a wrapped box that gives me the chills.  It might be the anticipation of guessing what’s inside or maybe it’s the way my eyes get all sparkly when I see the beautiful wrapping paper, neatly folded into crisp corners and kept together by invisible tape.   It may well be the big pretty colorful bow with wiggly, curly lines cascading down the present that reminds me of chocolate shavings on top of a delicious ice cream sundae. Whatever it is, it’s intoxicating.  It just does something to me.  Sort of like what sex does to the body, presents do to my mind.

What I like the most, actually, is the unwrapping . It’s not so much what’s inside the box (although I would never turn down anything from Oprah’s Favorite Things list) but the actual process of opening it up.  I love the feel of my fingers as they glide over the paper; the way my fingers pull it up.  I love hearing the crinkling sounds as I tear the patterns into pieces.  I love the look of the messy heap on the floor and scattered papers all over the room.

But most of all, I love the fact that someone thought enough of me to go out and actually buy or make me something that he thought I would like.  The fact that he then went home from the shopping run and spent the time to place the item in a box, pull out the scissors and tape and wrap it into a beautiful package speaks more to me than the actual gift itself.   It’s the real reason why I squeal with glee at the sight of “brown paper packages tied up with string.”  Did I mention that it’s one of my favorite things?