My mom and I like to touch base on Gchat at least once during the day, and this morning was no different. But unlike most chats, this one left me feeling a little more than bitter about the holidays and my role as the only other woman in my immediate family.
Our family is pretty big on gift giving--not so much spending a ton of money, but rather everyone buying everyone else a present. We don't have a ton of people to do this for, but it does get expensive, stressful, and time consuming especially now that my brothers and I are getting a little old for this. I have both a doctor and a lawyer for siblings, so there is literally nothing I could buy them that they need. And one of my brothers has the tendency to buy himself whatever he wants at the drop of a hat. Last year I found him the perfect gift (a Flash Gordon t-shirt) only to find that he had ordered himself one the day before. How can I buy gifts for someone who constantly buys himself ones?
On to my real frustration: stockings. Yes, we still do stockings in my family. It's something my mom loves to do, and we all enjoy getting them. But, things have changed over the years. It used to be that my mom did them for everyone (expensive!), but then I started taking over hers because she figured I would do the best job. Cool, I don't mind. I keep my eye out for things during the year. Not a big deal. But, this year SCL is coming home with me (a big yay), and she reminds me that I have to do a stocking for him. So, that's two stockings I have to do. Daughter: 2. Sons: 0. And I doubt my mom would even consider that if I'm doing one for SCL, maybe he should do mine, too.
And, need I say that I am the youngest sibling with the least amount of cash? Yet I'm the one expected to do my mom's stocking because I'm a girl. UNFAIR. It's turning what should be a joyful thing into a really infuriating one. It's not just about the money either. It's about the time, energy, and creativity required.
I don't want to turn into a humbug, but why don't the men have to contribute to the stocking frenzy? Why is it just assumed that my mom and I should have to put all of the thought and energy into the holiday season?