Now Sharon (who is of a certain age) sometimes has difficulties separating fiction from nonfiction. So she started expecting me to call and wish her a "Happy Birthday" everyday. Sharon felt sad when the birthday cards weren't flooding her mailbox. And, she also started expecting a birthday present every time I saw her. (I think her gift neediness goes back to when her ex-husband gave her a tin of smoked oysters for their first anniversary. Also, for her birthday one year, he put his old motorcycle helmet in a box and gave it to her. He obviously doesn't know that there is a BIG difference between vintage and used.)
So, being both one to please and go along with pure nonsense - I started bringing Sharon gifts whenever I saw her. Here is a partial list of gifts:
- two Joy Mangano hangers in lilac
- an orange peace dove sun catcher
- a teeny tiny Dalai Lama collage which reads, "My religion is simple. My religion is kindness"
- bottle cap magnets
- a flashy pink Goldi's tote bag (She brings it to the Farmer's Market every Saturday and says it causes quite a stir.)
- a bottle of Hopalicious (During the school year Sharon and I enjoy grocery shopping together after going out for breakfast at Lazy Jane's. This is very handy because I can just give her some groceries as a present. A rotisserie chicken. A roll of toilet paper. A couple of beets. She will take anything.)
This "Sharon Has a Birthday Everyday" nonsense is starting its second year. It needs to stop. I don't have time to continue thinking of gifts to give her or remember to daily wish her "Many Happy Returns of the Day." PLUS, I keep giving her my art work which I could be selling on Etsy.
I have come up with a desensitization program for Sharon. Here are some of the components:
- I will start giving her less attractive gifts. Like used tubes of lipstick, expired sunscreen, and jars of old lentils.
- I will set a gift in front of her for fifteen seconds and then take it back. Every time she doesn't cry I will throw her an M & M.
- I will talk in a soothing voice about how people really only have one birthday a year.
- I will develop a plan to slowly cut back on her multiple mailbox trips to check for birthday cards.
- We will circle her actual birthday on the calendar so she can have something tangible to focus on. (Hopefully she won't think of starting a countdown - like, "Only 178 shopping days to Sharon's Birthday." I seriously would not be able to stand that.)
Eydie, Just remember that my real birthday is November 16th. That is less than 4 months away. Prairie Sherry