I couldn’t help but notice a 50-year-old man get on the tram today. Staring back at the sidewalk, his eyes were twinkling in that way that only young love can do as he repeatedly waved goodbye to someone. Each time he wore a sheepish grin that would be embarrassing to most 50-year-old men…err..scratch that…to any men I know. Naturally, I couldn’t help myself and turned around (…casually?) to see a woman standing there all gooey-eyed as well — both of them seemingly oblivious to the fact that they were bordering on High-School-Musical-Cheese-Factor.
As the tram pulled away, and I swore I could hear an audible sigh come from the guy, I noticed that he had a wedding ring on.
Why was my first thought one of “he’s having an affair! That two-timing jerk!”? And then followed by my second (less damning) thought of “perhaps he’s a widow who just found his new love…awwww….”.
Is it possible to have hopeless romance if you’ve been married for 20+ years? Or is that hopelessly unrealistic? Does the deep love that you grow over that many years keep you from the fairytales-and-rainbows that these two seemed to be sharing in the midst of a downtown tram station with total disregard to the rest of us “realistic” types?
Most of us know the “honeymoon phase” doesn’t last for long, and when it goes, you’re left with a lot of hard work and humility if you want to make the long-haul. We’ve all seen relationships around us dissipate because the couple decided they married the wrong person when in reality, they just didn’t expect the “you-are-so-perfect-and-we’re-a-match-made-in-heaven” phase to ever end. So if I know that it’s unrealistic (and actually dangerous) to expect your relationship to be in la-la land for all eternity, I guess I’m wondering if it’s possible to experience it all over again — with the same person. Could this man, so in love with his bride, have actually weathered the storms of marriage, family and immaturity, to come out on the other side, with a resurgence of blissful love for the woman he’s woken up beside every morning for 20 years?