Recently I met a very nice couple, in their seventies. I had the opportunity to talk with them for a while, and discovered that he was from New Jersey and she was Swiss, that they lived back east in a lovely home with an idyllic view of a lake, that they had much loved children and grandchildren in Dallas, and that they had been happily married for over fifty years.
As we talked, I paid attention to what they said, but also noticed the unspoken things that were communicated in their expressions and body language…things like eye contact, a smile, a gentle touch on the shoulder, sweet little inside jokes…the connection they shared with their family…the way their thoughts and conversation just meshed. There was a sense of comfortable-ness between them…polite, respectful, playful, and relaxed. They were a couple with a history, in a marriage that had acquired the warm, soft-focused patina of age that becomes more meaningful and beautiful with time.
They made me think of my parents, who were married for sixty-five years until Mom passed away a few weeks ago. Like my folks, they are a couple who take their marriage vows seriously. They love each other, “for better or worse, in sickness and health, til death do us part"…not because they’re bound by social expectations or required by law to do so…but because their level of commitment to each other is so strong. They love…they care…they respect. Their lives truly have become one…and not in a bad, dysfunctional way. They are individuals, with individual interests, but they enhance each others lives in a way that just makes life better. They help each other through the difficult times and together, they celebrate the good. Not a bad way to live…
Happy Sunday! C