What To Give?
What To Give? Very good question.
In a short story about gifts, love and sacrifice, American writer O. Henry tells the tale of a young couple.
Jim and Della are too poor to buy each other gifts. But secretly, each makes a plan.
On Christmas Eve, Jim sells his family heirloom, a gold fob watch, to buy a set of ornate combs for Della’s beautiful long hair. Meanwhile, Della has her long hair cut and sold to a wig maker. With the money, she buys Jim a gold watch chain.
When the couple exchanges gifts, they laugh at the irony of their sacrifices. Yet Jim and Della knew how to make good choices. They knew how to choose a gift that was just right.
The perfect gift can be elusive, and too often we fail to find it. In a seasonal gift-hunting frenzy, we panic. That’s when we resort to the same old cliché of soaps and sprays and ‘gift sets.’ It’s the safe option that says: “Sorry about this. Please re-gift it if you want to.”
Perhaps we’re afraid to break with tradition. Perhaps we don’t trust our own taste.
Perhaps all we need to ask is: Would I like to unwrap this?
We don’t need to part with our hair or sell our gold. We just need to follow our instincts.
Enjoy the shopping. Go with what you like. You do know.