One of the things that happens when one gets to his/her old age is that one begins to think more deeply about life in general and about one’s own life in particular - and about relationships. The wonderment we had when younger as to why so many societies place their leadership in the hands of elders becomes clearer. Wisdom, in varying degrees, does come (or should) with age.
A particular realization of this comes in the manifestation of special enlightenment about the relationship between a husband and wife who have spent nearly their entire lives together. As we go on surviving and friends and relatives with whom we’ve had long relationships start dropping like flies from what remains of our lives, we come to the realization that through it all – and especially now – after You, our spouse is the channel of everything. When that spouse is gone we are about as desolate as we were when we emerged form the womb.
My wife and I have had plenty of ups and downs for almost 50 years, but as I grow older the more clearly I realize what a part of me she has become. Other than my children, who are gone from our home and have families of their own, who is there to not only tell me but to show me they love me; and who is there to smile at me and hug me; and who is there to care about and shape the way I act, the things I say, my habits and idiosyncrasies; and who is there from whom to derive feedback about how I’m doing; and who is there to forgive me; who is there to care for and nurture me, to tell me how to dress; to point out my faults; to ignore my impatience and my busyness? Conversely, who provides me with the opportunity to do the same for her?
When one first gets married they tell you that the half of the marriage that each party brings will, in time, grow to be one. It’s true! Without my wife, half of me would be gone and the remaining half wouldn’t know how to act without her.