There were eight kids in my father's clan, raised by two incredible parents in a household filled with love. My father was the second youngest child.
I am the youngest grandchild of the entire family. So for everyone who watched me grow up from a shy child with two braids, my wedding was kind of a big deal.
I had a bridal shower with my father’s side of the family. Aside from Chef J who spoiled us with salad, exquisite sandwiches, quiche, Belgian waffles, and omelets, my favorite part of the day was the advice I received from all of my cousins and aunts.
My cousin, Stephanie, had each person write down a piece of advice on a note card. She read each one without a name, and had me guess which person gave the advice.
It was an honor to be able to be surrounded by women who had more marriage experience in their pinky finger than most of us will ever know. Their advice was layered with common sense, simplicity, insight, and love, and I would like to pass it on to you. Please ingest what you need and like and feel free to share it with your friends and family:
- Never go to bed angry.
- Don’t re-fight old fights. Let them go because there will be fights (I mean disagreements).
- Try to always keep the sweetness of love present throughout your days.
- Cook something every once in a while (Something good!) (**An interjection by my cousin, Jordyn: "Scrambled eggs doesn’t count, even if you put cheese in them!")
- Laugh as much as you can – it keeps things in perspective.
- Be the best listener ever!
- Expect to have disagreements, even big arguments, but as long as they are not about love, you are alright.
- When in doubt, never shout. Stop, look, and listen, then respond in love!!
- Don’t buy a gun!
- Pray a lot!
- Don’t say everything that pops into your head. Mull it over for a day, a week, a month, or even a year first.
- Certain words can be really therapeutic if you just say them in your head over and over again. Out loud – not so much, but in your head, great!
- Spend lots of time with good girlfriends – it will help keep you sane.
- Never forget to take time for yourself.
- Have fun!!
- Never go to bed mad. Always put your differences aside because tomorrow is never promised and life is too short to hold grudges.
- Stay happy even if you feel mad inside.
- Keep your mouth shut. Use your feet – it takes two people to argue.
- Always be positive and keep an open line of communication at all times.
- Understand that you can’t change the man! Learn to live with your differences.
- Picture a red and white checkered table cloth. If you know one square is red and he says it is white, don’t argue. You know it is red.
- Pick your battles but try to win anyway.