It sounds so romantic when you are in the first blush of being in love… “We’re going to grow old together”.
The years stretch on and the blush of first love changes to something deeper and more meaningful.
If you are lucky, (really, really, lucky) you find that this person you’ve been married to all these years has become your best friend.
Yeah, there are wrinkles, hairs that poke out of places that never had hair before and bodies aren’t as strong, flexible and healthy as they once were.
Joints start to ache and illness and injuries occur.
The expected biological changes that are a part of aging bodies take place and you find yourself faced with doctors’ visits, hospitals and surgeries.
My sweet darling, my best friend, is having surgery today. Nothing major… Nothing serious… but my mother’s sister had triple by-pass surgery on Monday. It was scary and stressful and has me in a philosophical kind of mood.
I joke with the nurses, in a lighthearted way so that my husband might be less nervous. I kiss him good-bye as they take him off to the operating room and note that he’s already kind of doped up from the good stuff they put in his IV and he seems less strong, more vulnerable. and it makes me sad.
I step inside the elevator alone and cry a little as the reality of the situation hits me, as I let myself feel the bit of worry that is sitting in the pit of my stomach. As the elevator reaches the waiting room floor I take a deep breath, I imagine him home, under a car, swearing because things aren’t going together as they should. Healthy, strong and whole.
Then I square my shoulders, step off the elevator, and greet the receptionist with a teary smile and settle in to wait.
As I sit here in the waiting room, drinking bad hospital coffee, watching the “status” board that lets me know where my husband is, I have a glimpse of what growing old together is really about.
I see now that there will be dark days in this “growing old together”. More physical changes to come – as I look at the age spots showing up on my hands.
There are lots of really good times ahead. Lots of love, travel, and life to soak up together.
There will also be sickness, doctors and hospitals.
Hopefully not too many.
But the experiences of the week just makes me more determined to enjoy every single day of health and happiness I can soak up before we are finished on this earth.
With my husband, my family, and my friends. Every, single day is special and I’m determined to find the joy in each day I’m given.