For the past several years the word “pragmatic” has been popping up in my conversations with my husband whenever we got into any serious discussions about life and our place in it. Now that we are retired we have a lot more time to have these talks, and it has been amazing to me how we have gotten better acquainted with each other by just sitting and talking. After almost 24 years you would think that we are used to each other’s ways, but that is not always the case. When you both have a job somewhere there isn’t always time to really get down to the nitty gritty of how you feel deep inside about certain subjects. We think that we know most of how the other person will react to everyday subjects because we have been together for so long.
Each of us seems to have a certain boiling point, and we know pretty much what it is, so we try to avoid it. What is the point of having an argument when you know that you aren’t going to change the other one’s mind anyhow? That is what I call “pragmatism”, when you know what is important and what really isn’t. Like when you know that you really should get after that extra load of washing, but it surely will wait until tomorrow. Or the grass certainly needs cutting, but you can always do it later.
“Realism” seems to be a synonym that works just as well. One of the advantages of getting older is you begin to realize that it is a waste of time and energy to force anything upon anyone. Realism tells you that it is all going to work out just as it was meant to anyhow, regardless of what you do, or push or shout. If at the same time your spouse is learning the same lessons as you are, why, you are a very lucky person, and they will be happy to embrace your pragmatism. You will live in a more joyful house, and your children and friends will call you blessed.
A pragmatic is one who accepts what is, and is happier for it. But a pragmatic is also one who looks for the silver lining, because they know it is here somewhere.