The things we do together that make life special 28



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We’ve been a couple for 40 years, so when asked what makes our life special, there are quite a few things to remember with great joy. There are travels, events, the times we have organised a special occasion for the other.

But the things which really make a difference are much simpler. I just jotted these down in no particular order.

One will give the other a kiss on the cheek “just for being you”.

We walk along the beach; perhaps sit on the sand with fish and chips; wander the various arcades just beyond the sand, hand in hand, sometimes in silence, sometimes talking with every step. We take a walk around a park and point out an unusual tree, log, or perhaps a lizard or bird.

Conversations are about people we know, films we see – together and apart – what we are reading, news items, what someone said at work. We share the stupid jokes we hear and the important “stuff”.

We still plan a future together, trips here and there, most of which we’ll never take, but who cares? The brochures start to gather dust on the shelf, become outdated, are replaced by the next lot.

We value silence; we know that one of us not talking isn’t a signal that “something” is wrong.

He treats me like a lady and I treat him as a man – just as we did when we were dating. He offers his hand when I’m stepping out of a car or off the bus. He opens doors, stands back so I can enter first. I don’t find this at all demeaning, in fact, I love it.

We always share a good morning or good night kiss. We argue about lots of things, but not the things we value most. Believe me sharing a good argument is special; many men and women dread an argument because of the violence which follows.

We comment on what the other person is wearing. My ego glows when he tells me I look good and I tell him the same thing – there is no rule which says compliments go one way.

He knows how much I take things to heart and rather than try to jolly me with “don’t worry about it”, he’ll listen to my rant; he knows sometimes I just need to get it off my chest and the problem vanishes.

Neither of us suffers from depression, but both of us can get “a bit down”. This is the time when we read each other’s moods and respond appropriately; an extra cuddle, a hot cuppa, an “I’m here for you” kiss.

We share most of our lives, but also appreciate both of us need “Me” time – this in itself is special. It can be a simple as one of us sitting in the back garden, the other in the front.

I love Opera, Ballets and Chamber Music – he thinks they are great reasons to sleep and prefers to stay at home; I enjoy my own company for a few hours. He loves loud music; I think it causes really bad headaches, so I get control of the TV remote for a few hours whilst he goes to a performance by someone I’ve never heard of. But then we go to a play, a musical or movie and enjoy the shared experience. You don’t have to spend each minute in each other’s pockets to share good times.

I read a meme recently which is fairly true of us. It talked about the simple things we to do which show our love for each other and finished: “You don’t have to hear the words I Love You, to know you’re loved. Listen carefully. People speak from the heart in more ways than one.”

It is this listening from the heart and which makes sharing our lives special.

What do you share that makes your life special?


Karen O'Brien-Hall

I've had many careers in my life and loved each one! My new career blossomed when I retired and become an OAP. I am passionate about childhood literacy, books in general and my garden. I love Ballet, Opera, Concerts, Theatre, (both professional and community) and Movies. I tend to have opinions on most things and enjoy a good debate about the topic, not the person. In my thirties, I married my GOM (Gorgeous or Grumpy Old Man) the love of my life.

  1. I am coming up to 42 year with my GOW (grumpy or gorgeous old woman) and I also agree with every word……sorry ladies but this is equally the same for men.

  2. Only the other day, I was remembering that it would have been my 40th wedding anniversary. Even though we only managed to get half way, we shared some of the happiest times in our lives together. A lovely article, Karen. May you celebrate many more years together.

  3. For me its the getting old together…..quite comfortable with the future…..mind you we laugh a lot n still claim to be writing a book on each others goofy moments….up to chapter 21 at the mo…..(hypothetical)!!

  4. Karen, we’ve been together for 58 years and still have that warm and fuzzy feeling with my GOM (as in gorgeous!)

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