Life is not about what happens to us,
it’s what we bring to the party.
As I read this quote, I happened to look out my window and saw a friend on her daily walk. This might not seem so extraordinary to those who live in warmer climates, but Denise was plodding through the ice and snow that refuses to leave our area this year. The quote made me think of her indomitable spirit and joy for life.
Close to 80, Denise has been a widow for several years, but she refuses to let either of these situations get in her way. An avid gardener, Denise is frequently found planting or putting some whimsy in her yard. As a member of the local garden club, she participates in every event including neighborhood cleanups, fundraisers and educational opportunities. At her church she is a leading initiator of events, whether it is raising funds for those in need or bringing a smile to those who are sad. When not doing for others, she is eager for good party times or outings to a concert or play.
You might wonder what Denise’s story has to do with retirement marriage, but I think her life approach is an excellent formula for making relationships joyful.
When I talk with women with retired husbands, I frequently hear of aggravations that occur from living together 24/7. Denise’s attitude that life is what you make it reminds me that getting angry over a perceived annoyance committed by my spouse—or by anyone—isn’t worth the effort. She shows me that a positive attitude, at whatever party you happen to be part of, brings happiness. Her life approach reminds me that it’s helpful to question why something annoys me before getting angry. Most of all, she teaches me to let go of anger or frustration.
Admittedly it is sometimes easier to say, “Get on with the party” then to actually do it—particularly when something upsets you. Please help others learn to let go of anger or annoyances and appreciate life by sharing times when you have been able to do that.
For a great article on enjoying life, see 7 Habits of Incredibly Happy People.