FEEL GOOD FRIDAY: The Christmas Omelet
This morning I made my wife an omelet. This act alone is not super noteworthy. I make her breakfast fairly often. The unusual ingredient in this morning’s meal was the extra time and effort I put into it. I shredded cheese, sliced and diced ham and even butchered a perfectly good pineapple for this masterpiece. I whipped the eggs with a sharp eye for the proper, perfect omelet, consistency. I used my most supple and delicate wrist while applying the seasoned salt and pepper and I didn’t overdo the hot sauce that she likes. I even carved some not-quite-ripe avocado as a tasty garnishing topper and frankly, the soaring, yet subtle, crescendo to this marvelous creation. The finest of art has not known more true human emotion than this omelet. I put in the LOVE. Passion and conviction danced through each knife stroke and spatula turn to create an omelet worthy of HER and this foggy, late-autumn morning.
As she lay in our bed, sleepy and warm, about to begin her day, I delivered my gift. She was pleased. And so was I. Taking a little extra effort to make a breakfast I knew she would like made me happy. As the giver, I received more than the receiver. This is saying something. My wife is an eater. She likes food very much and she especially likes food that she doesn’t have to prepare. The fact that I enjoyed making this omelet more than she enjoyed eating it speaks to the wonderful joy of giving. Giving changes us. Following this little kindness, my day carried on with its own unique flavor. The smoky ham, sweet pineapple and sharp cheddar cheese took sanctuary in my spirit. My wife’s special omelet tossed a pebble into my little pond that sent ripples in many directions.
After the omelet delivery and before school, I sat on the couch and snuggled with my daughter. I told her that out of all the millions of little girls in the whole wide world, she was the best one. Her day was better because of this and so was mine. Throughout the day, I was simply nicer to everyone I met. Such is the power of a heartfelt gift. This morning, I learned or was reminded that giving is about the best thing there is.
With Christmas fast approaching, the world is buzzing with thoughts of gifts. The thin ether surrounding us is alive with countless loving and somewhat desperate considerations. People around the globe are smiling and fretting at the same time pondering the infinite gifting options. My recommendation this year is to give something that feels good to give. This makes the whole process a lot easier and much more fun. If the stars align and this gift is something someone actually wants, great, but if not, it will still feel good to give it. Note, I am not recommending senseless indifference towards the recipients’ wishes. I am proposing that a gift that feels good to give will nearly always be received warmly. It takes intent and good will to find these things and it shows. These presents are way better than some scrambling, last minute, cop-out gift that will likely be re-gifted next year. A true gift does not require anything more than a true thought behind it. A true gift comes from a special place. This place is ours and sharing it with the people we love is exactly what this season is all about.
A good gift can be given every single day. It can be a kind word, a smile, a wave, a bad joke. It can be a gesture that says something or says nothing. Sometimes saying nothing, says something. It can be a flower or a book or a meal. In fact, a meal, I know from experience, is a good gift, especially if it is a deluxe and delicious, super-bitchin’ omelet served in bed.
[EDITOR’S NOTE:”Feel Good Friday” is a regular column written by Des Moines resident Dave Markwell, who extols to all neighbors: “Enjoy where we live. Put your feet on the pavement and truly feel how great it is to live here!” Also, you can “friend” Dave on Facebook here. Or work out with him at his new exercise company Waterland CrossFit!]