we’ll look at our
our weathered lines
and wonder where
the time has gone
the dreams of our past
and see the gift of our
Teach us to number our days, that we may gain a heart of wisdom. Psalm 90:12
We celebrated our 18th wedding anniversary this past weekend. It was a beautiful day- much like the day we got married. As we got out of our car for our lunch date, I noticed an elderly couple making their way up to the restaurant door. He leaned on his walker and pushed it forward inch by inch. She followed closely behind him- watching to make sure he didn’t stumble. Any other day, I might have sped up my walk to get to the door ahead of them. Not that day.
“One day, that will be us,” I smiled as I told my husband.
Then just yesterday, I was with a friend in a coffee shop, and an elderly man came up to us. He was dressed nicely and had a pleasant way about him. He was looking for a flier, and then began to talk to us. He told us he had been married for 61 years. 61 years!!
I couldn’t believe it- because he didn’t look old enough to have been married that long.
“But, you couldn’t be more than 70,” I said to him in protest. “There’s no way you could have been married that long!”
“Oh yes, I am 90 years old!” He smiled, proud of the years he has experienced in this world.
“You want to know the hardest thing about being 90?” His eyes were glistening as he spoke, and I leaned in close as he talked.
He clenched his fist and brought it up to his ear- as if he was holding a phone receiver.
“There’s no one for me to call anymore. They’re all gone.”
My friend and I listened as he shared his random memories…of the passing of his wife, of friends who have experienced loss and hardship, and all I could think about was how important it is to be connected, to be present, and to take time out of our busy lives to listen.
Life, our memories, and our relationships are precious gifts- and our days here are numbered.
One day, that will be me.