My Christmas preparations are going well!! I put the cardboard shipping boxes on the sofa last night, wrapped up all the gifts I’ve made, included a few bought ones and put them in the right boxes. Then I finished making the cards, they just need to be written and then they can go in the boxes. Next will be baking today and then I can take everything to the post office tomorrow.
I feel a bit conflicted about sibling gifts. Due to the lockdown we are in, I had not expected my siblings to visit my mum, I’m not going either. But they’ve decided to visit anyway. I’m the oldest and have historically always sent them a card and a small, often homemade gift. I never really hear back from them, although, in a break with tradition, one of them did send me chocolate for my birthday this year. Since I wasn’t expecting them to be at my mum’s when she’s opening the box I figured I wasn’t going to bother with gifts for them, just a card. But now they are going to be there, I feel a bit bad about not including something for them. On the other hand, there are baked goods and chocolate that I know my mother is going to share.
Christmas gifts are not a big tradition here - we give gifts at St. Nick’s, December 5, but in reality in my family we stopped giving gifts when we all finished primary school. I’ve been getting everyone gifts ever since my parents stopped, which is like 15 years ago and no one ever got me anything in return. I used to think “well, they’re young” but even my baby brother is now approaching 30.
I don’t want to force anybody to give gifts if they don’t want to or can’t afford to. But my siblings never comment on or even confirm receipt of anything I get them, and certainly don’t get me anything, not just for Christmas, also not for other occasions, not even a card or a text. I’m tired of one-sided relationships and my #1 pandemic resolution is letting go of relationships that cost me energy and don’t give back. I’m not going to let go of my siblings of course but I was planning to really scale back the amount of effort I put into them. But now I have last-minute bad sister feelings Aaarghhh families are complicated.