The lyrics to Luther Vandross’s ‘Every Year Every Christmas’ come to mind as I expand on the thoughts I originally had around this particular post, but only because the song itself symbolises one of so many connotations associated with mainstream special occasions. I mean sure, for those detail Nazis who are always ready to point out the somewhat sinister origins of the exact dates on which special occasions are celebrated, the risk they run is that of missing the point completely.
Sure, Christmas day in particular may not really be the exact day of the birth of Christ for example, but then again do you celebrate it on the date you believe is the original one? The point is that there are some days which are set aside as special occasions so that we can celebrate the relationships we have with the special people in our lives or so that we can just celebrate those people.
I suppose it gets a bit easier to go along with in the case of something like a wedding because that’s something which is perhaps decided upon by the parties involved, so your possible views that marriage is just another institution to be monetised have no choice but to take a backseat. And it’s for the better too!
Anyway, if you want to derive a bit more meaning out of these celebrations, some of which may not even capture your imagination in the slightest bit, keep in mind that it’s merely an expression of your love for the parties involved. You’re not celebrating the institution of marriage for example, but are rather celebrating the official union of two people whom you are very fond of.
Now this derivation of the requisite meaning to make the exercise worthwhile goes back to your reinforcement of the close ties you have with whomever it is you’re celebrating a special occasion, so you should try and add a personal touch to it. Personalise the gift you’re sourcing and by that I don’t mean you have to literally have something like a personalised message printed on coffee mug or a t-shirt.
What I mean by personalisation is that you should take ownership of the implications tied to the gift you’re giving. Make it feel less commercial so to say, buy simply adding a bit of personal meaning to the process.
I’ll give you an example – a good friend and follower of this blog wrote in to us once, sharing a story of how he elected not to buy a particular fragrance while on a trip to Egypt because he had no one to give it to as a present. Now a fragrance perhaps doesn’t make the list of what would account for unique wedding presents, but that story behind the sourcing of such a gift is unique in itself and it would add that much-needed personal touch to what is otherwise just another clichéd wedding present.
The aim is to find a personal touch to add to it which stems from a unique dynamic forming part of your relationship with the recipient of the gift.