Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Why are men not-so-gifted at gift-giving?

Age 49: Day 18

This is not going to be a rant.  Promise. Nor will I make generalizations about men (though the title of this blog belies that statement).  But I wonder why so many women I know, women who love their husbands dearly, tend to come right out and say that their men are deficient in the gift giving department? Now, I wouldn't say that about my own husband--totally. For one thing, he gave me the life changing gift of my Kindle, after we'd been together only a year. In fact, with that gift, he proved he knew me better than I knew myself. "You love reading so much, I thought you'd like it," he said, as I opened the compact box. "It's BOOKS I love," I thought to myself. "Their smell, their feel, the browsing in bookstores." Flash forward three years later and I go nowhere without my Kindle--though at the time, I was going to tell my then-boyfriend to return it. But then my wise sister counseled: "Why don't you try it and see if you like it?" Well, I did.

Since then, though, I've noticed that my husband, usually so accomplished in every other area of life seems to kind of freak out when it comes to giving gifts. Or at least succumb to a sort of anxiety that results in me having to take his hand and tell him exactly what I want ("Write me a card." "Buy me earrings, please.") or risk being a bit disappointed. So, on the tail of my 49th birthday and first anniversary, what have I concluded? My husband does so much for me, every day, unasked. He makes my coffee (and breakfast) at 5:30 AM, when we are rushing to get me on Amtrak and I am too groggy to do more than get my clothes on. He DRIVES me to Amtrak. He opens the door for me to get into the car. Every time. He rubs my feet. He rubs my back. He tells me he loves me. Every single day and after every phone call. In short, he gives me the gift of his open heart, which is gift enough for me--and better than any material gift. Except I DO want a card.