When was the last time you felt really appreciated? Like knocked off your feet, blown away, seen, known, and loved by another human being kind of appreciated?
For me, it was this morning.
Today, Greg celebrates his 15th anniversary working for J&J. And, by default, it’s my 15th anniversary as a SAHM here at Casa Williby, as well. Usually, I’m all about remembering birthdays and anniversaries and that sort of thing, but this one escaped me. I mean, I knew it was sometime this month (see this post to that effect), but knowing the exact day? Nah.
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Before he left for work this morning…you know, that actual job that pays for literally everything we wear, eat, use, and live in…Greg called the kids into the kitchen for a “ceremony.” All of a sudden, I felt like a deer in the headlights. Everybody knew what was going on but me! They were all looking at me! There stood our kids, all smiles and conspiratorial grins, and Greg, rubbing his palms together, smiling like the cat who caught the canary. Obviously, they had planned something and I was not privy to what they had cooked up.
Once we were all circled up around the island, he said that it was important that they take a minute to recognize how Mom (yours truly) has been the best at taking care of all of them for 15 whole years now and show me how much they appreciate it. Then, he pulled a card and a gift out from behind his back and the kids all clapped.
I mean, really, friends. What in the world?! You could’ve knocked me over with a feather as I stood there in my bare feet and pajamas in the kitchen. I laugh/cried as I opened the honest to goodness “work card” (you know, the kind where everybody signs it with their own individual sentiments, all in their own handwriting in different sizes and directions) and laugh/cried again at all their sweet messages.
Then the kids were all over me to open the gift. This particular present had me stumped, though. I mean, Christmas just passed and there really wasn’t anything I especially wanted or needed. And what in the world could be in that foot-long rectangular box, anyway?
Greg then made a point of saying that, in the corporate world, you get certain gifts for certain milestones and he thought this was an appropriate way to mark my 15th anniversary. So, with my curiosity piqued, I opened it.
Ummmm…an Apple watch?!?! Holy shmoly!!
At that point, I reached out and grabbed all of my munchkins (two of whom are significantly taller than I am) and hugged them close. I kissed their heads and told them how much I loved each of them. Even – and especially – that big guy who was grinning and taking pictures and just oh-so proud of himself…yeah, I love him, too.
Gift giving is actually NOT my love language
Now, hear me out. I want to say something really important about this scenario, OK?
It is not the gift that made me the happiest. Nope.
The gift was wonderful and unnecessary and extravagant and incredibly thoughtful. Greg knows I’m trying to be more active and would enjoy the health aspects that the watch has to offer. He also knows that an Apple watch is not something I would ever splurge on for myself. So, he did it for me.
(By the way, my husband truly is an excellent gift-giver and I’m sure I could make a killing signing him up to teach a husbanding course on the subject. But that is neither here nor there.)
My love languages are Words of Affirmation and Quality Time, though, and my family gave me both of those in spades today. Their words, both spoken around the kitchen and written in that crazy card, poured love into my heart in such a special way. And they gave me their time last evening, completely unbeknownst to me, putting all of this together while I was at a meeting.
Fancypants watch aside (which, am I actually smart enough to figure this thing out, I wonder?), just having my family take the time to recognize my effort and celebrate an anniversary whose date I couldn’t even name? Let’s just say that my cup runneth over.
And what am I going to do to honor his 15th anniversary?
Well, I’ll encourage him to pick a prize from the catalog of anniversary gifts that his company gave him. I’ll let him pick our daughter up from dance class like he does every Monday night. And, I’ll even have dinner ready and waiting for him when he gets home. Then, as the cherry on top, we’ll fall asleep on the couch together watching TV tonight. It’ll be amazing!!
You know, sometimes, I truly feel like I don’t deserve this amazing husband God gave me or the family we’ve created together. But, I have to say, it really is nice to know that they feel the same way about me.
And furthermore, I certainly hope that my children will learn the art of gifting from their dad and not from me. It will make their future families so very happy!!