"...it is playfulness, joy, and a profound zest for living and loving that most characterize these pieces."
(Excerpt) Since all the various stages of adult life together are represented here, the same event might mean something entirely different to a given couple, depending upon which stage of life they are in. For two lovers together a decade and now getting married in their early thirties, marriage is an entirely different affair than it is for a couple getting married after fifty years together.
Now in their fifty-seventh year as a couple, Tom and Ron recently married in Palm Springs. Tom shared with me, "After fifty-seven years, marriage is just a formality and a way of protecting one another. The clerk was not very happy with me when she said, "In sickness and in health..," and I just had to laugh. It was like we have already been there. When she said, "May you have a long and happy life together..," I laughed again.
She wanted to know what was so funny, and I said, "At eighty-four and eighty-five how much time do you think we have left?" My dark sense of humor I guess. But we have made all the arrangements, cremation services, Columbarium, Celebration of Life, trust, and wills. While we were making arrangements at the mortuary, the guy asked what kind of box we want our ashes in. I picked a brass box with name and dates. Then he asked Ron, who said he would take the cardboard box. I looked at Ron and said, "You are NOT going to be next to me in a cardboard box...". The look on the guy’s face making the arrangements was really funny. Needless to say Ron is also going to be in a brass box."
These are typical issues and concerns for couples in the winter of life. For a young couple getting married in their thirties, huge, promising vistas still stretch out before them; they may be brand new parents, fondly envisioning the day when they can bounce their first grandchild on their knee. Or to a twenty year old, whose longest love relationship has been only three weeks, ten years with a partner sounds like an eternity. A couple together thirty-five years may tell you that they were really just beginning to hit their stride at the ten year mark. It's all, as they say, relative. Life's successive seasons find us at different places in our lives, and each one offers it's own unique tapestry of opportunities, rewards, sorrows, and joys.
© Tim Clausen 2014