Will it Bother You Tomorrow?

keyIs “forget about it” the key to a happy marriage or any relationship?

I recently attended the funeral of a 99 year old woman. I remember Tillie for her vibrant personality, her smile that filled a room, her red, short, tight curly hair and gold bangle bracelets. When you entered the room she was the first to greet you with a hug and a kiss.

During the eulogy, my cousin Debbie (Tillie’s granddaughter) shared some touching stories and memories. One story in particular peaked my interest. With my cousin’s permission, I share that story with you below.  A conversation between my cousin and Tillie about the key to a happy marriage.

…We were talking about the wedding plans and marriage in general, and she said she had some advice for me.  Her advice was always good and simple, so I leaned forward attentively.

She said, “Always kiss goodnight.  You will get mad at each other and not want to, but always kiss good night.  And when you wake up, say Good Morning and make him coffee.  Don’t stay mad – it’s not worth it.

When something makes you angry think, ‘will that upset me tomorrow?’ and if the answer is no, forget about it.  If the answer is yes, think, ‘will that bother me in a week?’ If the answer is no, forget about it.  If you think it will still bother you in a week, ask, ‘will it bother me next year?’ and I know the answer will be no.  So if it’s not something that will make you mad for a long time, let it go.  That’s the key to a happy marriage.  Let it go.”

Tata’s advice was always simple and true.  She lived a healthy fulfilled life.  She loved everyone, everyday. She didn’t sweat the small stuff.  She didn’t get angry. She forgave any misgivings. She focused on the good, and she remembered to thank God for all the blessings in her life.

(Note: Tata is Arabic for grandmother)

When I first heard the eulogy and even now, it sounds so simple. Of course some situations may require further conversation and clarification and closure. When referring to the small stuff, though, is it really as easy as letting go?

A big part of “feel good living” is being able to forgive and let go. To not hold on too long, in this case, to things that won’t upset you in the long run. Deal with what needs to be dealt with, forgive, heal, grow and then let it go.

Challenging as it may be, forgiving, healing and letting go feels good.

Your thoughts? Do you think letting go is the key to a healthy relationship – marriage or otherwise? Is there something you could let go of in order to enjoy a more fulfilling relationship?

Thank you to my cousin Debbie for allowing me to share this touching passage. In memory of her grandmother, Tillie.

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1 Comment:

  • Susan O’Brien

    I always say, “don’t sweat the small stuff,” and “pick your battles.” I think this applies to all relationships – work, marriage, friendship – as well as marriage.

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