First of all, I'd like to thank all the nice people who posted birthday greetings here. Certainly unexpected, but as certainly appreciated!
For whatever reason, I had a truly splendid birthday this year. As far as I can tell, for no special reason at all! But for the whole week, I was receiving ecards, and 'real' cards, flowers (roses from husband, some kind of daisy like plant from friends) and candy (ah, chocolate truffles - heavenly!) and gifts - the kind of small (and large) gifts that tell you that the person who chose it actually THOUGHT about what you would like! (thank you Mira for the Amazon gift certificate! Thank you Baruch for the specialty soap bar with mud in it! - okay, I admit it, I have eclectic taste in gifts).
And thank you, too, to everyone in my office, who prepared and brought an entire LUNCH for everybody on my birthday - fried chicken, butternut squash soup, macaroni salad and rolls - and that absolutely wonderful German chocolate CAKE!
I have wonderful friends.
Nothing from my sister. Nothing from my brother.
So what else is new?
I truly don't understand them. I send THEM gifts, for birthdays and holidays. Cards. Flowers and fruit.
Knowing my brother, he probably just frankly forgot.
My sister, though - that's another story.
No way she 'forgot'. Her birthday is two days after mine, and I not only sent her a package, I also wrote, and even called her on the phone and left a birthday message. This is part of a pattern of behavior, that seems unlikely to change anytime soon. She is well-organized, efficient and old enough to know better (we are both in our fifties). So what is it? Ultimately? One reason is her own personality - she cares for her husband, she cares for her children - and as far as I can tell, that's about it.
Plus, of course, she doesn't approve of me or my life. What did I do to her? I converted to Judaism, that's all. From her POV, that makes me close to certifiable, and certainly a possibly dangerous person to have around the children. Who knows? It might be catching.
Of course, that was over twenty years ago - but as far as I can tell, she started out life as a judgemental person, and age doth not wither nor custom stale...
She's still my sister, as far as I'm concerned. I'll keep sending her birthday presents, and Christmas presents. Why should I let HER behavior stop me from an activity which I enjoy? I like to buy gifts for people. For me, it's not about 'the exchange', it's about the giving.
Although I sure hope she doesn't browse B'net and read blogs.