The most wonderful time of the year

I did some Christmas shopping today. Let's not get all crazy and think I went into a store or anything. I wandered around on the Internet and clicked "checkout" a few times. It was fun. The very fact that it was fun should be telling. I fret about Christmas shopping every year. It wouldn't be December if I didn't break down in tears at least twice over gifts.

I have worried that I haven't gotten equitable presents for our friends and family. Are we doing "big presents" this year for my family or his family? I have a Google doc that goes back at least five years listing what we have given as gifts just so that I can try to be consistent.

I have worried whether we should ship gifts or wait until we see them in person. What if we won't see them until late January? What if it's spring? I can remember getting mad at Rich in years past for picking out gifts that were difficult to ship because they were 28" long and not in a box. Just looking at the oddly shaped item would make my stomach knot.

Most of all, I have worried that I haven't gotten the right gifts for Rich. There aren't any things we desperately need to have and we're pretty happy already, so I can never think of what to get him. I always want to find something special and then I over think it. That's where most of the tears happen is when I see Rich getting excited about surprises he has gotten me and I haven't found a single thing for him. I get all panicked and somehow think he's going to be upset with me. Really, he would just like his wife to not burst into tears when he mentions Christmas (poor guy).

This year, Rich's surgery has given me an advantage. I've bought a few presents for Rich. I've bought a few presents for friends and family. For folks we probably won't see, I've picked out very small things. For folks we will see, I'm just getting things that please me and ignoring price tags to make everything match. And if there are a few people who get nothing this year or their present comes in March, I'm sure they'll understand. Suddenly gift giving is fun again and not a chore. And all it took was a 14" incision in my husband to give him the shopping handicap and let me catch up.