Whenever I ask my kids about gifts , I give them choices. That way I can be sure the gift bought will be within my budget and at least I have the time to prepare myself.
Like when I asked them “which gift do you prefer this coming Saturday? A trip to the mall or a new dvd player.”and the answer will be unanimous. “A new dvd player,” when I thought it would be a trip to the mall.
When I ask them why, they would reply,”because a day in the mall is good for one day where as with a new dvd player, we can watch all day.”
I usually tell them they are still lucky because back when I was a kid, I never had the opportunity to choose. In fact, I seldom get gifts until that day my Aunt (and godmother from CA) sent me a birthday package. It was a Minnie Mouse wrist watch, 70’s edition. It was also the first time I had a watch. And just like any other kid, I was so curious how it work. So I tinkered with it and played with Minnie Mouse’s hands which serve as the watch’s hands. I was so interested because Minnie’s hands never got tired of moving so I played with it.
Clockwise, counterclockwise, counterclockwise, clockwise.
I would listen to its tic tac sound, putting my wrist near my ear. I was just amazed and even hoped that Minnie’s Mouse would turn as well. I was enjoying with my gift which I turned into a toy. Until one day, my Dad noticed and told me that if I will not stop playing with Minnie’s hands, she will grow tired and not move anymore. And since I was just a kid, I did not listen. Until one day the watch stopped working.
I never knew what happened with the watch after that, I might misplaced it or threw it away. I was too young too care.
Then one day as I was cleaning our old cabinets, something caught my eye that looked familiar. An old Minnie Mouse wrist watch whose hands and its bracelet both, now gone. Turned out it was my old watch, my childhood gift that I had turned into a toy. My Dad must have kept it all those years because he keeps things that matter to him, especially if it was a gift. He had valued the thought behind the gift , but more so, the memories that went with it. Since he had no means to buy me a Disney watch at that time, left alone any watch, because we were very poor, he just left me play with it, letting me enjoy my curiosity as a kid, hoping that one day I would remember.
In which I did.
Now that I have kids, now that I have long learned the value of giving, I have learned how precious that wrist watch was .Not only was it a collector’s item, which I never thought at that time, but how timeless and priceless that gift has become that I shared that story to my kids.
I still kept that watch. Though my Dad had been gone for 24 years, my Aunt still lives in CA together with my Uncle who is my Dad’s younger brother. And yes, my Aunt still remembers me especially during Christmas. And every time she sends me a gift , there will be her handwriting which I remember vividly as a kid. And that always bring a smile to my face because after all these years she remembers me still. Just like the old Minnie Mouse wrist watch that I have kept, and will never be forgotten.
(Image Credit: Bradley Minnie Mouse)