Presents come from Santa. This is per our 10 year old son. All too aware of how in not to much many more years he will know what is behind Santa’s delivery magic, I simply agreed with him. He then went on to say gifts come from mom and dad. The difference of a present and a gift I asked in response? He didn’t know other than who they came from. Perhaps Santa does have something more magical that make his things presents?
I have used both presents and gifts interchangeably. It never occurred to me that they were different. Maybe they are not but yet they feel different in how they sound and feel. Both are incredible to receive. For a young boy I am not sure he really cares what the difference is either as long as they are there. The surprise and excitement over them is heart warming and joyous. The ability to do something that causes someone to excited, happy and know they are loved is indeed a wonderful gift we can give each other. To me that is where the difference really is too.
Per the Merriam Webster site they mean the same. Both gift and present are synonymous when referring to something thoughtfully given, often in recognition of an achievement or holiday. However, gift can be used as an attributive noun, as in gift bag or gift box. Additionally, both gift and present function as verbs.
Yet why do they feel different?
Gift seems more special to me for some reason. It carries something deeper about it that can be a physical thing, a service or act even. It is a gift of our hearts that someone was thought of in friendship and love that we were compelled to do something for them. It triggered an action from us regardless of time of year, holiday or season. It is a gift to be thought of right? Bestowing gifts on someone doesn’t have the same ring to it as bestowing presents. At least to me.
The more I thought about this the more I was convinced gifts were better. Our son will one day know Santa how he manages to deliver around the world in a single night. While I have saved his Santa letters each year for him to read when he is older he may even forget what he asked Santa for or why he wanted it. He however won’t forget the magic of Santa and the gift of excitement that created in him each Christmas. The magic of the season in a child’s eyes. He will realize the gift that mom and dad gave him in instilling that magic in him too.
Nature gives us so many gifts every day. Some call these blessings and they are that too. Yet being able to see the sun rise, snowflakes fall and stars twinkle are gifts. They fill us with hope, let us feel a part of something bigger and instill in us the magic of life itself. That’s huge! It seems only appropriate to call them gifts too. Somehow presents just doesn’t carry the same weight for how much this means to us every day. It is why I believe we have the saying every day is a gift.
This is why I believe living naturally is so important too. We experience things that often get overlooked in our process of living every day. We instead find that space to take in the meaning of what is going on and see nature’s imprint on it all. We find ourselves appreciating deeper the small simple things in life that make things beautiful. The stress and anxiety of living in the modern world seems less chaotic and dramatic because we have this peace about us. We pursue our hearts more and listen less to the crowds. It is the gift of nature that creates that in us.
I found in my own journey about this that the more I included nature in my day the more the gift of it expanded in me. Stopping on my way of starting work to see the sunrise made me smile. Enjoying a look up at the sky at night while I wait on the dog to do her last run of the day gives me peace. Feeling the cold temperatures, which I’m not a fan of, give me hope of warmer days ahead. It helps me get through my day realizing there is something I am part of that is bigger than the problems I am facing today. It also helps me realize nature is there to help me through those problems too.
The other way I include nature in my day is through the products I choose to use to support me. It is profound how much difference it actually made to swap products. The truth is when I open my makeup case to get ready and I pick up a natural mascara to apply I know I’m putting nature right on me. When I start the diffuser in my bedroom at night full of great smelling oils I’m taking nature to bed with me like an extra blanket against the chill. You name it and I have found a way to have nature by my side all day and night. The gifts nature gives me to feel my best is beyond words. It is a gift that has changed my life. I mean seriously who else thinks about half the products they use in a day and how they make them feel?
That’s just it though. The underlying experience of a gift that not only makes you feel good when you first get it but that keeps giving you that experience. It delivers that same feeling of contentment and happiness when you see it, use it and put it on. For anyone who says essential oils don’t work, they have not experienced this is why. It changes how you see the world and your place in it. That too is a gift many more of us need in these times of strife and disconnection.
So while presents are cool, I believe the real magic is in gifts. Maybe Santa doesn’t deliver those either because they are freely available all around us to receive when we are ready. My son was right gifts do come from others when we share what is in our hearts so openly as to inspire happiness, fulfillment, contentment and joy in another.
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