“Love the giver more than the gift.” – Brigham Young
It’s the thought that matters.
My kids gave me a fuzzy blanket the first year of my multi-year divorce battle. It probably cost $15 and I’ve gotten great use from it during races or the nights I work so late I just crash in the office. And when I curl up in it on the couch, the love of my kids wraps around me and warms me from within even more than the blanket warms my body.
A gift is often an expression of someone’s Love Language. If it is carefully thought out (like my New York Yankees blanket), the gift is a physical manifestation of the feelings of the person. Whether it is that mug with butterflies and the Eiffel Tower to replace their one from Paris that got broken, or the pumpkin spiced latte on the first cold day in November the thoughts behind a small but well-reasoned gift mean more than a new BMW or yet another piece of jewelry picked up at the last minute. The former show that you are putting your heart into a little thing (a microcosm of the relationship oftentimes), the latter ones are mere money and semi-meaningless in that they are generic and fungible and do not aim for the soul but rather the ego.
If you love them enough that a gift is unnecessary but take the time and emotion and reflective reasoning to get them something that resonates deep inside and is a piece of you instead of an emotionless and meaningless piece of junk (even if worth tens of thousands of dollars), that is a gift of self that will be appreciated for years.