I love getting gifts. Does that make me shallow? Maybe, but I really appreciate when someone takes the time to show me that they thought about me. It doesn't have to be anything expensive, I really do hold to the 'thought that counts' addage as long as it's something the person truly thought I'd enjoy.
I say all this because the main reason that he was so Johnny on the Spot was that a few months ago while we were dining with friends and I was a little tipsy, I accidentally-on-purpose brought up the hospital gift shop leftovers arrangement of carnations I'd gotten the previous year. Really, that's just as bad as stopping and getting the droopy crap from the grocery store on he way home because as you were at work and everyone talked about it, you realized what day it was.
J and I just have very different values that we place on gifts; call them 'love languages' or whatever you want, but we have always felt differently about it. I know that he was not intending to hurt my feelings, but tell that to my emotional self.
What he didn't/tried but couldn't understand was that this was not so much about him being thoughtless as it was about me feeling like an afterthought. Yes, he worked that entire day...but did he also work so much during the week leading up to it that he couldn't have entered his information in a website, get me a coffee card, or even make a card for me out of the billion pieces of construction paper we have at home? I would have been happy with any of these. Unfortunately, there's just no way to come out of that conversation without sounding like a total spoiled brat and ungrateful bitch.
He left for work after my glistening eyed, surprised thank you (I truly was not expecting anything) and I busted out the laptop and started perusing the mom-approved section of Victoria's Secret which, for me, was a pretty large selection of very pretty, comfortable-with-a-hint-of-the-sexual nighties. I didn't look at the selection of what's become my uniform of pants and tops, I'm not that bad, but to be realistic, when you have a 4 year old who still climbs into bed with you more nights than not at some point, you can't be wearing a dominatrix boustier with matching thong to bed. Well, you could, but a call to Children's Services may be in order. I understand that that above-described outfit is not actually worn for very long when it is utilized, but I'm making the most of my lingerie dollars, so mom-approved section it is.
H came out from his bedroom as I was flipping through some of the pictures and he instructed me that I could not wear this selection because it was 'way too long!'
Um, excuse me? Who are you?
Um, excuse me? Who are you?
Yep, that's right. I wasn't sure whether to be incredibly flattered or stunned that even a four year old would pick a ridiculously impractical piece of fly-away gauze. Um, sweetie, the belly and thighs aren't mommy's best features right now, but thank you for thinking I'd be pretty in that! Oh boy, I've got my work cut out for me.
In the end, I picked this one; much more Madonna, (as in Madonna/Whore complex; thank you Sex and the City) but as we enter the Season of Lent, also much more appropriate.
When J came home, H had stayed up to give J his Valentine...the decorating session which resulted in not a card but a sticker-bedazzled face, because 'these stickers are wicked cool, Mom!' After I thanked J for the flower arrangement that had been delivered to my door while he was at work, H presented me with a Lego creation that he then pronounced 'cost four and-a-half hundred of thousands of dollars!'
I quickly corrected him, saying that presents don't have to cost a lot, they just have to be thoughtful, and I loved the Lego fighter plane he built for me. I felt very smug in my 'life lessons taught' moment, until J smugly quipped from the corner 'Unless you think about flowers from a hospital gift shop, H. Don't ever do that, or you'll never hear the end of it.'
Okay, okay, mea culpa.