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The Gift That Changed My Life

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A decade ago, I gave my two closest friends a Christmas present that has changed my life. It was a pair of warm and snuggly pajamas. You know the kind. The ones that are so soft you just want to bury your whole face in them. They are soft and warm and wonderful. They fit perfectly and keep their shape and color. You aren’t ashamed to be seen in them and you don’t feel like a shlump-a-dinka if you wear them all day on a lazy Sunday.

As soon as I saw them I knew they were perfect for them. I knew they would love them because I wanted them for myself. It never occurred to me to buy myself a pair. I slept in an old t-shirt and a pair of old sweat pants. I would never waste actual money on something as frivolous as pretty pajamas. I was a Mom and there was a laundry list of much more important things I could spend money on. The kids needed stuff (kids always need stuff). The school had sent home a Christmas wish list for each classroom. Each teacher needed a gift, gifts for my office party, my husband’s office party, cousins, sisters, brothers, mothers, fathers and the list goes on … It never occurred to me, not even for a second, to put myself on that list. I never thought of myself as worthy of a little indulgence.

The next Christmas, my two girlfriends, gave me the perfect pair of snuggly pajamas. One sent along a Christmas card that said, “Last year you gave me the best gift ever. One I loved, but would never have bought for myself. Thank you for showing me that you thought that I was more important than I thought I was. This year, I want you to know that you are more important than you probably think that you are. Enjoy.”

Every year, we now all exchange beautiful, luxurious pajamas. We each buy one set to keep and the others to give. We send each other handwritten notes that remind us that we are special and wonderful and loved. It’s funny because when you treat yourself as if you are important, you begin to believe that you are.

Don’t let the rush of this season make you forget to treat yourself well. Don’t forget to value what you give to the world. Don’t put yourself so far down the list of things to do that you drop right off.

Have you forgotten how important you are? Have you failed to value yourself?


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