Tuesday, October 27, 2009

A life lesson from a different time.

I've heard some pretty good advice recently. It didn't come from a self-help book, a popular television host, or even the ever-truthful pages of Cosmo. Instead, it came from my ailing eighty-one year old grandfather.

It was a long day at work, and all I really wanted to do was go straight home, curl up with the blankets and watch a movie. Instead I met my relatives in my grandfather's hospital room, where the conversation quickly turned to old memories.

My grandmother had passed nearly three years before, and since then, my grandfather has let certain details slip that I'm sure my grandmother wouldn't have wanted many to know. For example, they have twelve children. Now, this might sound excessive, but when you learn that your grandmother never wore pajamas to bed, it makes more sense. However, my grandfather also speaks highly and admirably of my grandmother; theirs was a true love that lasted the changing decades.

As we sat reminiscing, my grandfather's raspy voice -though the softest- rang out above the rest, "Elsie and I never fought. We had discussions, but we never fought. It was because I always treated her as a lover first...and a wife second." My grandfather learned early on something that other men never seem to grasp: just because you're married doesn't mean you stop courting the woman you love. She is an ever-changing creature, and to presume that your job is done once she has a ring, is a very, very grave assumption.

That generation really does know what they're talking about. But their advice only works if we would pause a moment to listen.

- Grace falls down like rain on this girl.