If the young people do think we're old, they're just seeing things a little more clearly than we are. We're still looking at the world out of eighteen-year-old eyes and holding to our end of the contract by staying forever young, and wondering why the Devil didn't get the memo. Deterioration shocks us. Memory betrays us. We never saw it coming.
The love part is easy. I married a man who welcomed me with a blast on a bugle whenever I came home from work. Who tells me I only have to eat three carrot sticks, but slides in a replacement whenever I take one off my plate. Who is man enough to admit it when I get off a better fart than he does. Who has been telling me I'm beautiful long after it ceased to apply. Who has already made sure everything I'll ever need or want is on hand and running smoothly, and has done it so quietly and reliably that I probably don't even recognize the half of it.
That's the real beautiful thing about a long relationship. Not that two people have lived a life of sunsets and chocolate and honeysuckle. But that they have learned to trust that their worst will be tolerated long enough for their best to emerge. That the gnarly bits as well as the rosy goodness will still be greeted by a bugle at the door.
Yesterday Dave and I celebrated our 29th anniversary. Some of those years were touch and go, but most of them have been wonderful. I've signed on for the rest. The best.
Dave makes dinner.