I got to practice what I preached yesterday. I had an interesting talk with my dad at the end of the day about presents and how much they really add to our happiness. I came to the conclusion that in much of middle class America, many of us may not necessarily be happier to receive gifts, however, I think we would be unhappy if we didn’t get what we wanted. It’s like we need the gifts to just be at baseline. They don’t necessarily make us happy, yet without them, we would be unhappy. Coming to this idea, my dad said that people who lived this way are going down are dark path of which there is no happiness—it’s never enough.
We then talked about the people who would trade away all the presents in the world for certain things—certain things that are so easily taken for granted until we have them taken away. People who are sick would probably sacrifice all the pairs of pajamas and purses in the world if they could be healthy again. Or people who have no family, few friends, and no love in their life, they would probably give up all the gifts they could get if it meant they would have someone to share their life with.
When my dad told me all of this, all the petty concerns of presents seemed to fade away. It really doesn’t matter—these things are simply that, just things. They don’t have a spirit to them, they don’t make us healthy or truly happy, and they don’t give us company. Learning all this meant a lot this Christmas and I hope I will remember this for the rest of my life. I’m grateful for my dad who reminded me of the true meaning of Christmas.
What did you learn this Christmas?
The Sunny Girl, Lauren Cook
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