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16 February 2010

Sunday was my grandparents 65th wedding anniversary.  Take a second and contemplate that number.  65.  That’s longer than more than a few of us can reasonably expect to live, and it becomes that much more impressive when you factor in all the things that that span covers.  It goes without saying that some serious congratulations are in order.

It’s interesting to think a little about what such a large number means, though.  You might be inclined to dwell on the sheer longevity of it (as with most impressive things), and contemplate whether there is some particular secret to keeping a marriage devoted and loving for that long.  I know I catch myself in unrestrained awe every now and then as well.  But really, when I think about what I hope that particular phase of my life will be like, duration doesn’t really factor in.  That part, I suspect, will happen or not with relatively little input from me.  Rather, I’m inspired by the fact that they’ve never really lost sight of the simple manifestations of love–the way my Grandpa does yardwork with an almost religious devotion, or my Grandma printing off and reading aloud stock prices every day so that Grandpa doesn’t have to deal with reading off a computer screen, or The Chestnut Cottage, their weekly breakfast haunt .  Even after 65 years, those things haven’t faded in importance.  They do whatever they can to make the other’s day just a tad easier, to alleviate even slight annoyances.  That’s not to say that there aren’t more momentous acts too–there have been too many nights spent in hospitals in those 65 years to say that.  But they realize a most counterintuitive and, frankly, unromantic truth: that those moments are the test, not the basis, of love.  That foundation, like any other, is built below the ground, doing its work unnoticed.

I imagine it will be a long time before I find out exactly how much I learned from them. Probably, far more than I realize now.  But on an occasion like this, I thought it appropriate to stop and offer some congratulations on what really lies behind a number like that.  I count myself as very lucky to have seen such love in my life.

One Comment leave one →
  1. notatertots permalink
    5 March 2010 2:26 am

    You write so beautifully.

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