One of the great lessons of older age is pausing to reflect upon life while it continues to unfold. In our hurry to do it all and have it all before our mortality is eclipsed, we often let slip through our fingers small nuggets of gold. Worse yet when we set aside the biggest nugget of all, in the hopes of finding one even more humongous.
Living with someone is a compilation of habits, both good and not so good, accumulated through the days, weeks, months, and years we’re together. Romance and sexual palpitations give way to affection and sweet gestures, if we’re lucky. However butterflies in our stomach, whether thousands or simply a handful, are more often displaced by nibbling moths as we go about our daily grind.
It’s so easy to speak unkind words, raise an eyebrow in disdain, or lower the iron curtain of silence. In youth we pride ourselves upon our self importance, our independence, our ability to move on…alone, if necessary. Not so quick are we to dwell upon these things in older age.
Our significant other becomes like one with ourselves. No longer are the lines of demarcation so absolute. They’re fuzzier now. The distinctions almost a blur.
The same blood doesn’t course through our veins, having been born of different parents. But in a relationship that has weathered the tsunamis of life with steadfast resolve…water is thicker than blood.
While still requiring practice and firm resolution, acknowledging the value of those who have stood by our sides is imperative as life’s embers start to dim. As our insatiable appetite for things and glory wanes, what’s left are small golden nuggets. Always present, but often overlooked.
Bite your tongue when your loved one leaves a dish in the sink, rather than placing it in the diswasher. Give your loved one that leftover, pulled-chicken sandwich you were hoping to devour for lunch. Allow your loved one to complete tasks when inclined, especially when relaxation is a luxury.
A less than sparkling home, an opportunity to lose weight, and keeping one’s blood pressure in check are a good tradeoff for keeping our loved ones happy and still over-the-moon with their choice for life-long mates.