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The Alternative Spoonie Gift Guide

Personally, I don’t particularly like receiving gifts. Partly because I move between two bases. Carrying things and storing things is always a problem, so I really prefer to have as few things as possible to worry about. I’m also very concerned about the environment, and the energy, water consumption and pollution involved in modern manufacturing methods. Although I love to give, I don’t particularly like giving ‘things’, I get stressed about finding something that the recipient really wants and will use, because I really don’t want to contribute to more wasted energy and pollution. My energy is also very carefully planned out and distributed and I just don’t’ have a great deal spare for shopping, even if I could think of what to get people! And of course, unable to work full time I have a very limited budget too!

I prefer to make my gifts, prepare you a special meal (carefully planned and paced) or give love, attention and support.

I’m saying all this because the best gift for me as an environmentally conscious spoonie would be to take the focus off the modern materialism of gift giving and refocus on the fact that giving is really an act of love; a means of sharing joy.

For me the best acts of love would be ones that would help me enjoy the holiday season without it impacting negatively on my health, so these are the gifts that I will really appreciate this year:

  • Your understanding that even though I might not be able to connect in the traditional way these holidays, it doesn’t mean that I don’t want to connect. Drop me a quick text or an email and ask me what’s the best way for us to connect this year!
  • Your understanding of the way I have to manage my energy and what that means for social occasions
    • I may not be able to travel far
    • I may not be able to stay long
    • I may need a quiet room in which to rest
    • If you’re visiting me I may need to ask you to keep your visit short, or I may need to take a break
  • Your help and support in managing my energy. I will be tempted to overdo it, I will want to have fun. Gently encourage me to keep my boundaries and look after myself.
  • Your understanding that I have to schedule very carefully in order to have enough rest and recuperation between events, I may have to say no, but it won’t be about me not wanting to be there!
  • Your non-judgemental acceptance that although I have special dietary requirements I may occasionally choose to loosen them to experience a holiday treat. However, that needs to be my choice and not imposed on me. When I make that choice I will be thinking damage limitation and will have an awareness that I am also choosing the negative consequences, just like you might, if you choose to overindulge. This doesn’t mean that my diet isn’t important so please be understanding if I have to bring special food to a meal we share.
  • Your presence. As I may not have much time to spend with you, let’s not waste it, let’s really appreciate it and choose to really connect and talk about what really matters!
  • Your willingness to see me behind my health issues. My health issues are, unfortunately, a big part of my life, but there is more to me, so let’s focus more on the other!
  • Your appreciation of the value of the energy that I am spending on being with you. It will be a large proportion of the precious little energy I have.
  • Your willingness to keep focused on joy when we are together, lets pay attention to letting go of any negativity and chose to celebrate instead!
  • Your understanding if things are late. Aiming to meet postage deadlines can be a huge pressure, and any kind of pressure can cause a flare in my symptoms. Even electronically I may not be able to connect with everybody I want to in a particular time frame so please understand that you will be in my thoughts even if you don’t hear from me when you expect to.

Sending my wishes that your holidays are relaxed and peaceful and choc-a-bloc with love and laughter!

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One Response to The Alternative Spoonie Gift Guide

  1. Jane Jackson December 6, 2017 at 11:36 am #

    What a beautiful piece of writing Julie. Says it all so succinctly. Thanks for posting it.

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