The Story of the Secret Shoebox

An elderly couple had been married for more than 60 years. During that time they had shared everything. They had no secrets from one another, except one: the little old woman had a shoe box in the top of her closet that she had cautioned her husband never to open or ask her about.

At first the husband was a little perplexed, but he loved his wife and obeyed her wishes. Though he was tempted, he resisted every urge to look in the box or question her about it. As time passed it became easier. He found he gave it less and less thought, until finally he had almost forgotten about it completely.One day, however, long into the twilight of their marriage, the little old woman got very sick. After a prolonged period of illness, the doctor informed them that she would not be recovering.

While trying to sort out their affairs, the old man came across the shoebox once again. He took it down and sat with it at his wife’s bedside. She agreed, finally, that it was time to reveal what was in the box. When he opened it, he found two crocheted dolls and a stack of money totaling $95,000. He asked her about the contents.

“When we were to be married,” she said, “my grandmother told me the secret of a happy marriage was to never argue. She told me that if I ever got angry with you, I should just keep quiet and crochet a doll.”

The little old man was so moved, he had to fight back tears. Only two precious dolls were in the box. She had only been angry with him two times in all those years of living and loving. Though still deeply stricken with sadness at her illness, he was suddenly filled with a luminous joy.”Honey,” he said, “that explains the dolls, but what about all of this money? Where did it come from?”

“Oh, that?” she said.  “That’s the money I made from selling all of the other dolls.”

Source: An online anecdote for years, this charming story has no known author. This is our slightly revised version.

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