Grandmother’s Wisdom for Family Life

July 15 2022

The people with whom I live are not perfect. But I am not perfect either.

One day years ago my mother-in-law said to me, “just pick up the socks.” I was puzzled. We weren’t talking about her son, or housecleaning or anything remotely related to this comment. I guess she just felt it was important to pass along some wisdom for getting along with the man that she had raised.

Although socks were never an issue, I did understand what she was saying; I could spend the next several hours looking at “the socks” and being mad that they weren’t where they belonged, or I could pick them up and forget about them. If I spent even fifteen minutes stewing about the socks my temper would be so frayed that I would find a lot more to be angry about.

Popular wisdom says, “don’t sweat the small stuff.” So does a healthy spirituality.

Healthy spirituality moves us towards accepting our common humanity … my own and my partner’s, my children’s, my relatives’ my co-worker’s. A healthy spirituality would have me become more accepting of others’ “socks” as I become more accepting of my own foibles, forgetfulness and insensitivities.  

Perfection is a lonely place; being imperfect, even I couldn’t live in that place. I choose family; we’re not perfect but we all belong.

Gratitude Prompt: Give thanks for my family and for families of all kinds who are trying to live together and grow together in love.