First off, thanks for all your love, concern, messages, comments and prayers with regards to my accident. The out pouring of love and concern was overwhelming. Thank you all.
A friend of mine recently got into a relationship. She's not the most vocal person in the world but I can tell she is feeling the guy. His birthday is coming up and she sent me a message yesterday asking what type of present she could get for her boyfriend in a relationship that was barely a month old.
What do you get for the very first birthday in a relationship?I remember I had this type of dilemma and handled it differently at different times. You all know that I love birthdays, mine and anyone else's. I get so excited and I start planning presents in my head. I want something nice and memorable all at once. But the first birthday with the significant other is always a tricky issue. Normally, if yours is the first, you can sort of follow the leader, in the sense that, what you are given will set the tone for the gift giving level of the relationship. But when you are the one dictating the pace, it is quite tricky to get right. You don't want to go too big; you want to work up to your greatness. How do you come back for an all expense paid trip to Mauritius? You have finished yourself na. The expectation for the next birthday would be a trip to space and the next one a trip to heaven. Similarly, you don't want to go too small. You don't want to go with a home made garri-cake simply because it is the first birthday and you want to work up to your greatness.
I have gone really big before and got burnt. I got an ex a really,really, really expensive watch for the first birthday. My sister side-eyed the life out of me but I was protected in the bubble of my own lurv sturvs so I didn't feel the impact of the side eyeing. That relationship didn't even last till my own birthday! Sucks to be me. You know I wanted my watch back! But for serious 'mind side-eye', I would have called to collect my watch and pawn it to make my money back. The next relationship, I took the guy to dinner. It was a really lovely dinner at a nice seafood restaurant. I think that is the right balance. Not cheap, but not a completely grand gesture either. Working one's way up to the said greatness.
When my friend asked my opinion, I had a long list of what NOT to give for the first birthday. The list swings both ways, but it is usually girls that find themselves in the pickle of what to give. Blame it on our thoughtful nature. Anyway. here are some of the items on my ' do not even think about it list' in no particular order:
- Expensive-ass wristwatches and/or jewellery: see reason above. Learn from me people.
- Holidays: Again see reason above. How do you come back from this in a none anti-climatic way?
- Monogrammed His & Hers towels: Ok creepy, it is the first birthday of your relationship. Try not to run him off. Ditto monogrammed bathrobes, monogrammed jewellery proclaiming 'temi' or 'love of my life' or 'my heart belongs to you' or 'Jack & Jill 2013' or any other clingy rubbish. In fact, avoid monogrammed stuff all together on the first birthday.
- Massages: It is the first birthday. This just reeks of a more comfortable and steady relationship.
- Deeds to your property: Don't side eye me, it has been known to happen. Let him huff and puff and blow the whole house down, make sure you hold on firmly to your deed. No be you koba am. Let all things belong to both of you in a marriage. Not now.
- Virginity: If there are still any of you rare breeds out there, I beg you with the mercies of God, please DO NOT GIVE ANYONE YOUR VIRGINITY AS A BIRTHDAY PRESENT. DO. NOT. DO. IT!!!!!!!!!!! It always seems like a good idea at the time, but it never is. Your virtue is not a birthday present at any point in time, let alone on the first birthday.
- Cars: You are not Kim Kardashian. Enough said.
- Money: she ori e pe sha? He's not a prostitute. Even if he is, he must surely be off the clock when it is 'us time'. Stop she be!
These are some of the things I think are no-nos, only because I feel when the first birthday rolls around, it is likely the relationship is still a burgeoning one. I think it is imperative to give it time before pulling out all the stops. Plus if the person is the one, you have a life time of gift giving ahead of you. I would liken it to a 10,000 metres sprint. Mo Farrah starts with his best foot forward certainly, but he paces himself and gives it a big push in the end to win the race. There will come a time when giving holidays will not be too fast, too soon, when giving someone a car will not be extravagant, when buying adjoining cemetery plots as a gift will be appropriate. The time is not the first birthday. That is my opinion.
The real conundrum in this post is this: I was able to list all the things not to give but came up short on ideas of what to give. I like experience presents, so I would give a dinner, tickets to a play or a comedy show for a first birthday or first valentine. I find knowing what he needs at the time also helps. So he may need an external hard drive or something, That would make a good gift for that period, I guess. But I really don't have a go-to first birthday present. So I would like comments on what you think about my opinion on gift giving on first birthdays as well as what an appropriate first birthday present should be. Don't say perfume and shirt sha o. We all know that one.