Credits: My Sweetest Heart by GingerBread Ladies, journaling background still from Say Something by A Great Big World - Internet, Fair Use
Journaling: I was talking with Grandma a while after Papa died about love. They were married 50 years a month before his passing and I’d remarked that ever since I was little, I’d always seen them as being “romantically in love.” If I ever did get married I wanted that kind of love that was secure and still affectionate years later.
First she agreed that she found the romance was always there. It matured with them but it never went away. It was priorities, that’s what makes love, how you know you’re in love. “Papa was the priority in my life and I was the priority in his. Even before your mom, because if we weren’t there for each other, how could we be there for her?” Powerful. Being in love, prioritizing your spouse, gave them the ability to prioritize their child together.
I remember spending the night when Dave and I were little. I could hear them talking when they woke up. I don’t remember if I heard much of what they said (the grandkids were still asleep, it could have even sometimes been early morning afterwards pillow talk.) But I do remember they always said "I love you" to each other before they got out of bed. It made happy, it made me feel loved.
When I visited is an adult I always remember that when one of them said they were ready to go to bed the other one always went to bed at that time too. It was always just natural that they went to bed together.
Because they had always been so close, although no one said it out loud, many members of the family were worried that Grandma wouldn't last long after Papa ws gone. She confided in me that “he knew" that last year before he left. He was always interested in what she created with her quilting hobby and joked with her that she had enough unfinished quilts to need too live to 100 to finish them.. He told her she was going to have a computer, which she said was absurd. But he told her we're going to have great grandchildren in a few months and she'd eventually have to get computer so she could talk with them. (Grandma got her first computer and learned how to use it in her 70s. Her first instant message was with her great-granddaughters.) He didn't want plan trips for next year yet, but he reminded her to never lose her love for travel he just wasn't ready to plan something yet.
She said he he was both preparing her for what was going to come and letting them know not to follow so close. It was 16 years and she never dated again. “Nobody will ever be able to spoil me like your Papa did."