Though we both agreed we’d become much more negative over the years, you truly were a positive person. Yes, you got discouraged, but you were always fighting.
You told me how you remembered coming home from a retreat one time as an adolescent and just deciding that you weren’t going to complain anymore. You told me in the hopes that I would learn from you because I complain a lot.
You told me that your dad used to always use this phrase, “Positive mind thinking,” and we would both use it often. If you were having a particularly rough day, I might say: “positive mind thinking!” and you’d say, “Yeah, I know.”
Your mom must’ve given you some of that as well because I remember how when I was unemployed when we first got married, she would call and tell me to be “bright.” You explained to me how that would translate in Korean, but I really liked the word “bright.”
On our honeymoon, we started watching a show one night that was new at the time called “Trading Spouses.” Sure, it was on FOX and a reality show, but we both thought it was really well done and really well edited. There was always a lesson to be learned by the spouses that went to live with a family very different from theirs. You liked the fact that rich women went to live in poorer families and vice versa and it seemed like everyone actually learned something.
In the first episode we ever watched while laying on our bed in Mexico, there was a woman named Tammy. She was the one you were supposed to hate. She came from money but had no class. She had a southern accent and big blonde hair. And the editing on this one was perfect. Right after they showed a shot of her complaining about the standard of living in her temporary new home, they went to a shot of her telling the camera she had a lot to offer the new family- that she could bring a lot of “positivitism” to the family. We laughed and laughed and this became a little joke we kept the past six years. “You have to have positivitism!” we’d say to one another.