When Brandon and Kathy Gunn got married in Michigan nine years ago, they received on very interesting gift from Kathy’s great Aunt Alison. On the outside of the box it said: “Do not open until your first disagreement.” So for the past nine years the gift has sat unopened on a top shelf in their closet.
“Now, there had obviously been plenty of disagreements, arguments and slammed doors throughout our nine years,” Kathy wrote in a Facebook post. “There were even a couple of instances where we both considered giving up … but we never opened the box.” Why? Kathy explained that they were too stubborn and also determined to make any disagreement work so they wouldn’t have to open it.
“It forced us to reassess situations,” she says. “Was it really time to open the box? What if this isn’t our worst fight? What if there’s a worse one ahead of us and we don’t have our box?!? As my Great Uncle Bill would say, ‘Nothing is ever so bad that it couldn’t get worse.'” So they waited. But when they recently were brainstorming gift ideas for another wedding they’re attending, they decided they’d waited long enough — and this is what they found inside:
There were two hand-written notes wrapped around money — one was for Kathy which instructed her to use the cash to buy pizza, then start a bath. The other was for Brandon and instructed him to use the money in the box to buy flowers and wine. So not only did the box provide them with all the tools for an epic date night, but it also taught them important communication tools as a couple.
“For nine years (and three moves) that box sat high on a shelf in various closets gathering dust,” she says. “Yet it somehow taught us about tolerance, understanding, compromise, and patience.” And that, is what they call priceless.