I don't know--I think it's me that's changed. I hate getting expensive presents, I hate it, there are a million reasons that the rule of my life is to buy something I want myself and hope people give me like, bath stuff or I don't know, chocolate for significant gift-days, because the thing is, I break stuff too and it's horrible when a gift becomes like an albatross someone uses against you remember I got you that necklace and you broke it for fucking ever.
It's something I cannot explain to my parents about him, or for that matter, about me, or about well, anything, because it would hurt them, but--if you are going to throw a fit when he loves his toy and plays with it to death, give him a fucking gift card so he doesn't have to not only have the broken toy but a world of misery and reminders of being careless and ungrateful and what-the-fuck-ever for however long it takes for finer feelings to get numbed over. And then have it brought up in front of relatives for years because it's funny to remind him that Christmas was a dark, miserable time about the love of giving but only if giving it means you can exercise the right to judge what they do with it. A lot.
You know. Not that that has happened to me or anything. Because I learned quickly to put that shit up where I will never be tempted to use it, like a watch I'm scared to wear. It's not that I will ever get away from being careless and ungrateful and impatient at this point; it's more that I don't like wearing the reminders daily, you know? I have this lovely new green blanket that is soft and perfect and I don't know if I'll ever use it because it is soft and perfect and fragile and shows stains if I spill something by accident and a robe I got two years ago that's carefully hung in my closet and this. Is. Not. Workable.
Things I Never Do: I never ask if my niece (or anyone, ever) enjoyed her gift, or look around for it, or wonder if she got any use out of it, or if it was destroyed during a Bratz-related escapade outside or something, or demand to see it still in mint-condition somewhere. It doesn't matter. I didn't get it for them to enjoy the fact I gave it to them. I gave it so they would use it, sell it, break it, whatever with it, just enjoy the thing in whatever form you can.
I'm getting him some lennox china and letting him break it outside on the sidewalk or something. Maybe me too.
And in other news, Dr. Who! We have it slated for this afternoon viewing. Potentially with some sort of chip-related snack food and dip. Delicious.