Everyone loves a good wedding. It’s a day for the bride and groom to celebrate the start of their new life with their loved ones, bringing joy, love, and laughter to everyone involved. However, it’s pretty normal for the bride and groom to get some post-wedding blues after their big day. They have spent so much time and effort planning the day that when the party’s over, sometimes it can leave you feeling a bit deflated.
So what’s the best cure for a bride and groom’s post-wedding blues? Well, it’s opening the presents of course! There’s no better feeling than ripping open the paper of a freshly wrapped gift, and when you’ve just got married, you’re sure to get a whole table full!
But what’s the best type of wedding present? Is it something nice for the home? Is it a nice wad of cash? Or is it something all lovey-dovey and sentimental? Well, this is the story of one Michigan couple who received one of the most thoughtful sentimental gifts imaginable. They just had to wait nine years to open it.
A loving couple
Brandon and Kathy Gunn live in Northville Michigan. They fell in love as soon as they laid eyes on each other, knowing straight away that their connection was something special.
After a couple of years dating and falling head over heels for one another, it wasn’t long until Brandon asked Kathy for her hand in marriage. It was no question for Kathy. It was an immediate yes. The ring fit perfectly!
A day to celebrate
There was no doubt in Kathy’s mind that she wanted to spend the rest of her life with Brandon. They were meant to be together. They knew it themselves, and so did all of their family and friends who watched their love blossom into something incredible. The year was 2007, and the couple couldn’t really remember life without each other, so they decided that the wedding should take place as soon as possible.
They didn’t want to wait around any longer. They knew what they wanted, and they wanted to start their new wonderful life together straight away. Most women dream of their big day from a very young age, and Kathy was no exception, so they started the planning and preparations with tremendous excitement.
Kathy did want her wedding to be special for everyone invited, but most of all, she just wanted it to be a perfect celebration between her and Brandon. He was the love of her life, and all that truly mattered was the love they shared. The couple decided that they would get married in Jackson, some time in September.
After weeks of searching, they finally found and booked the most beautiful venue. Everything was starting to fall into place! They had a lot to plan, but after finalizing the guest list and sending out invitations, they then moved on to one of the last jobs – sending out the gift list. It didn’t really matter what people decided to buy them, but they knew it was the protocol to do so.
However, there was one person who didn’t plan to give them anything from the list, and that was Kathy’s Aunt called Alison. Aunt Alison was ever so special to Kathy, with the two having grown close since her childhood when they would spend a lot of time with each other. They made some superb memories over the years.
Aunt Alison was one of the first people that Kathy told about her engagement to Brandon, and she couldn’t have been happier for the couple. Aunt Alison got on really well with Brandon, and she knew they were right for each other because she had never seen such a big smile on her niece’s face when she was around him. In her eyes, they were perfect for each other.
The special day
Brandon was fully welcomed into the family, and this made the imminent big day even more exciting as it wasn’t just about the coming together of two people, it was a celebration of two families coming together as well. The big day finally arrived, and Aunt Alison was a huge help in making sure everything went to plan.
Kathy loved her Aunt greatly, and she couldn’t wait to walk down the aisle with her family by her side. Hundreds of other family and friends were invited too. They wanted their big day to be extra fun, and so they invited a whole host of their loved ones to be there celebrating with them. This was going to be no normal wedding. It was party time!
A party to remember
The wedding was in full swing. People were dancing. Drinks were flowing. The cake was cut. This was the best day of Kathy and Brandon’s life, for sure. In the corner of the venue room, there was a table set up for the guests to leave their gifts.
The table was full! They couldn’t wait to open them all. They felt very lucky. However, there was one present that stood out to them, and who was it from? It was the gift given to them by Aunt Alison.
A special present
Standing out amongst the other gifts, Aunt Alison’s was a box that didn’t look like your typical present. There was a note attached to the top that read: “Do not open until the 1st disagreement”. Kathy and Brandon were so confused, but most of all, they were eager to tear it open.
It was like that feeling when there’s a big red button that tells you not to press it, but all you want to do is press it! They were ever so curious to know what was inside, but they knew they shouldn’t open it just yet.
Curiosity took over
Kathy knew she couldn’t let her aunt down, so the couple decided that they would have to do all they could not to let curiosity get the better of them. Although they had only just got married, surely their first disagreement was only round the corner?
Everyone knows that saying – “You two fight like an old married couple!” So Kathy and Brandon knew that patience was a virtue in this situation. They had no idea what was inside, but they would soon.
Out of sight, out of mind
As their post-wedding blues set in, Kathy and Brandon finished up opening all the gifts they had received, but there was still one that needed to be opened. However once again, the couple had to sit on their hands and continue to be patient.
In order to make sure they were successful in waiting until the time was right, they knew they needed to put the gift out of sight, so they tucked the gift away in the back of their bedroom closet.
Starting their new life
After the first few weeks of it playing on their minds, life took hold. Weeks turned into months, and months turned into years, all while the gift remained hidden away in the closet. They started to forget about the present completely.
Even though they did have disagreements, when they did argue they still forgot that the present was waiting to be opened. There was too much going on in their lives for them to remember.
A new start
After their marriage, they then welcomed two children, and their life together was starting to blossom into something bigger and beautiful. They were really happy together, and the next step in their relationship was now to move house – somewhere bigger for their children to grow up happily.
This move to their new home came a whopping nine years after their wedding in 2007. A lot of things had changed, but they knew it was time to start a new era.
No more patience
They were massively excited, but with a big move comes a lot of hard grafting packing up the house, so Kathy and Brandon got to work with clearing things out and putting them into boxes. While clearing out their bedroom closet, they came across the present that they had entirely forgotten about!
Kathy called out to Brandon who came rushing over to see Kathy with the gift in her hand and eyes wide open with glee. They knew that it was time to open it.
Tearing open the paper
They pondered for just a moment on whether it was worth waiting longer, but their patience had run entirely run thin. Today was the day! Kathy anxiously started tearing away the paper, with a million different things running through her mind thinking about what it could be inside.
Ultimately, they really did have no idea. The gift was meant to be opened when they had their first argument as a married couple, so what was the meaning behind this? They were about to find out!
They finally saw what was inside. It was two bundles of cash – one labeled as Kathy’s and the other for Brandon. There were even more instructions too. Kathy’s instructions said: “Go buy a pizza for you both, or something both of you like, and then get a steaming hot bath ready.”
This made them smile. Then Brandon read his: “Use this to go and buy some flowers and a nice chilled bottle.” As they read the notes out loud, they couldn’t help but giggle a little.
A box of goodies
The contents of the box didn’t stop with the money and notes. Aunt Alsion had also bought them a lovely glass vase, and a set of dining glasses. They assumed the vase and glasses were for the flowers and drink that Brandon was supposed to buy Kathy to make up to her after their ‘first disagreement.’
It was such a brilliant idea, and Kathy and Brandon loved it. It meant a lot to them that Aunt Alison had bought them such a thoughtful and meaningful gift.
A sentimental gift like Aunt Alison’s now meant a lot to Kathy. She could see how much effort went into it, and so the 9-year wait felt totally worth it. After having had lots of little fights and squabbles over the years.
It now made them wonder what would have happened if they had actually remembered to open it after an argument. Would it have been successful in reconciling their differences? Would the flowers have worked?
Aunt Alison’s gift wasn’t just a gift, it was a heartfelt message to them both to really think about what is important in a marriage. Aunt Alison wanted them to stop and think about why they were arguing and consider whether it was worth fighting about or not.
She knew how perfect they are for each other, so in her eyes, no argument couldn’t be fixed without a bath and some flowers. It seemed like the perfect remedy for a squabble!
Standing the test of time
In the nine years that the gift was kept in their closet, the couple had a fair few fights. However, each time they did have an argument, they decided not to open the present because they would think – “But what about if this one isn’t our worst argument?”
Kathy recalls her Uncle Bill once saying to her: “Nothing is ever that bad that it couldn’t get any worse.” From this advice, Kathy and Brandon would always choose to save the gift for when the time felt right, not just in a petty argument.
A strong couple
Perhaps this was the lesson that Aunt Alison was trying to preach – she wanted the couple to ponder on their argument, thinking about whether it’s actually as bad as you first think. It never is! After opening the gift and reflecting on their nine years of marriage so far, Kathy and Brandon felt positive and optimistic.
The gift made them realize how strong they have remained over the years, strong enough to not open the gift, and strong enough to continue their fantastic marriage together.
Looking to the future
The lesson taught by Aunt Alison was one that would stick with Kathy forever. It meant the world to her that Aunt Alison would give them such a caring and thoughtful gift that has ultimately really helped them both.
Kathy decided that she wanted to share the story online, so she uploaded a post to social media. She wrote: “This has made me realize that the ingredients for maintaining a strong marriage were not in the box, they were always within us.” Cute!
Taking to social media
The post gathered huge amounts of attention, going viral all across social media. The story-telling platform ‘Love What Matters’ soon got wind of the story, eventually uploading a post which received an amazing amount of support.
Over 23,000 have liked the post, 4,000 people have shared it, and over 1,000 have commented. One user has commented: “You have a very wise Aunt who ended up helping more than she could have known. Congratulations for staying on the right path together.”
Aunt Alison’s present did so much more good than she realized it could. With Kathy and Brandon choosing not to open the gift on multiple occasions, this subconsciously reinforced to them both that their love is totally worth fighting for.
Nothing should ever stand in the way of the life you set out to live. We can all learn a little lesson from Aunt Alison. So next time you’re at a loss of what to buy a couple for a wedding present, you know what to do!