I used to spend all year shopping for our kids’ Christmas gifts. It was great fun! Buying for a family of nine meant I had to budget and spread the purchases over many months. I enjoyed the hunt for bargains and special gifts for each child. I liked taking them shopping for their siblings.
Then we lost my dad and Ron’s dad in a short period. Five years ago I spent the summer caring for Ron’s mom in her last days. Then we lost Andrew.
I’m tired of death. All these losses changed me. I don’t enjoy shopping at all. The malls this time of year. So many triggers. So many material things that just don’t matter to me anymore. Yuck!!
But my family still wants to celebrate Christmas. We all still enjoy getting gifts.
My kids are all adults now. Ages 20-32. They have specific wants and tastes. Many things they want are practical items. Not fun toys and such I used to shop for. It can be hard finding those specific items and the right sizes.
Plus I’d have to go to the post office to mail things. (I used to mail fun care packages to Andrew regularly. Trigger.)
We’ve found a way to make Christmas shopping easier for me: They each make an Amazon wish list and email it to me. I know used books are fine with them (we all love books!) and I know who is okay with used items. I’m able to get them gifts they want without the drudgery of shopping. I can make them feel special and give gifts they love without forcing myself to do something I just can’t stand anymore. Not now. Not since losing a child.
So shopping on Amazon Smile works well for us. Items for out of state kids are shipped straight to them. With Amazon Prime shipping is free and I don’t have to work hard at packing and shipping. (Plus a charity I’ve designated benefits each time I use AS.)
Not an advertisement for AS. But an idea for those of us who aren’t at a place to choose gifts or fight the crowds at the malls. For us who still tear up or for whom shopping brings all kinds of triggers.
My kids don’t open the boxes when they arrive; they know the Amazon box is from us. They simply wrap any Amazon box. Then they open it on Christmas Day.
I hope this helps some of you.
It strange how much work it is to think of gift ideas now.
Any of you struggle with this? What do you do?