Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Small gifts

I met my betrothed when while working full-time and going to school full-time. I was completely my bachelors (a thing I’d promised myself I’d do when the divorce was final). That should tell you how unsuccessful I thought internet dating would be! Who looks for the man of their dreams while working and going to school full-time! I got up at 5am and went to bed around 11-12 every day. I had evening classes every night. Insanity!

Anyhow……we were walking through a craft store, fairly early in our relationship, to get something for a project he had going. We meandered through a couple aisles into the beading and jewelry making department. I pointed to a kit of tiny seed beads in about 20 beautiful colors and said that maybe when I got out of school I could have hobbies just like he has hobbies. That was a goal worth working toward. I’d never had a real crafting hobby, and I’d like one.

I proceeded to forget that conversation. Two days before my graduation, he told me he had a gift for me. A graduation present. I was confused, because he was taking me on a week-long trip for my graduation. Surely that was present enough. Why on earth did he find it necessary to give me a gift too? When I got to his apartment that night, there on his desk was the exact kit I’d pointed to. He had to go to two stores to find it. I burst into tears when I saw it. This was for two reasons. The first was a horrid reason! I’d picked a fight that night. I was stressed out from finishing up my classes and the fight was entirely my fault. The second reason was that it showed that he paid attention and actually listened to my hopes and goals, and I cannot say that I’d ever really experienced that.

For almost a year I was afraid to touch the little kit. I felt I’d tainted it somehow by picking a petty argument the night he gave it to me, after he’d done something so incredibly thoughtful. I was also slightly petrified that I wouldn’t be able to master the tiny beads….that I wouldn’t be any good at it or be capable of making anything wearable.

Then, after we became engaged, I felt it was time to put all that aside and dig into this most thoughtful of gifts. I have enjoyed every minute I’ve spent with those little beads. I’ve made my earrings and bracelet for the wedding. I made my mother’s as well. My grandmother has now requested a set (and she wears clip-on earrings so that will be new!). I also made the earrings I wore in my engagement photos. His “small” gift has meant more to me that I think he could possibly know, and I will continue to use it with great delight!

Mom's me.

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