This was the “joke” played on me at Christmas. Looking back, it’s kind of funny.
Well no, ok, maybe it’s not.
Maybe I’m just oversensitive?
You be the judge.
PJ and I go to his parents’ house for a 6pm Christmas dinner. PJ hasn’t gone home in weeks, so I have two Christmas gifts there that are unwrapped. We walk in, and he commissions his aunt Ludi (Mom’s youngest sister) to wrap them. The hype starts:
“Ooooh, PJ, can I tell Jojo what you got Jenna?” “Jenna, I can’t wait to see your face when you open the gift!” “No, I can’t tell you, it has to be a surprise for everyone!”
This goes on for two hours. Meanwhile, his other aunt (Rora) sees a flash of something sparkly on my left hand (a beaded ring) and nearly rips my finger off trying to see if I’m engaged. She must be listening to Aunty Ludi.
Finally, we open gifts. After all the Secret Santa gifts are done, we start handing out individual gifts to each other. Aunty Ludi comes in the room and sits directly across from me. She starts beaming and talking about my gift, and how much I’m going to love it.
Now, PJ knows not to propose in front of anyone. In fact, I repeatedly tell him (on a weekly basis) if he does propose in front of anyone other than our pandas, the answer is “No.” But because of all this hype, I start to think maybe PJ is going to risk it. We’ve been talking about it a lot lately, and with his mom and dad getting older, we do want to give them grandkids before it’s too late. So maybe he’s right, I would say yes eventually, even if I’m mortified for a few minutes.
He thrusts the gifts into my lap kind of secretly, and there are two: A square box, about 3x3x3, and a box that is clearly a bracelet or something like it. My mind is racing. He did say he’d get me the pearl ring when I got a
job, maybe he’s waited till now? This box looks a little large, but
maybe there’s another inside it? He wouldn’t propose now, would he?
When did he have time to ask my dad? How did he buy a ring and not let
me see it? God, I hope he didn’t spend a lot of money. Why would he tell Aunty Ludi first? He’d probably have told Ashely….did he buy it on eBay?
I start to open the square box and Aunty Ludi yells “NOOOOOO NOT THAT ONE YET!!! OPEN THAT ONE LAST!!!” A million more questions flood into my head.
By now the entire family is in the room. Aunty Rora, Aunty Chi (the usual troublemaker) as well as all the uncles, and PJ’s mom came into the room. His cousins are all staring, beaming. His sister looks bitter, and his mom looks like she’s going to have a heart attack. I wonder if it really IS a ring in the small box.
I open the larger box, which is a bracelet with two Swarovski pandas. I love it, of course. Aunty Ludi now tells me I can open the smaller box. The family is sitting at the edge of their seats, and it’s quiet. They’re staring.
I unwrap it, and there’s a satin green box. Green, my favorite color. He did it on purpose. I opened the box, and there was a ceramic panda, with a little row of rhinestones. The panda opens. Aunty Ludi is literally at the edge of the chair, leaning forward with a gigantic grin. I open the ceramic panda, starting to tingle with anticipation, and….
I look up, confused and speechless.
She falls back in her chair, cackling.
“HAHAHAHAHA! HAHAHAHAHA! JUST KIDDING! MAYBE NEXT YEAR! HAHAHAHA!”