Forty-eight years. According to www.convertunits.com that’s 17,532 days.
In my opinion, July 25, 1964 officially kicked off one of the greatest love stories ever lived. True, it technically started months earlier when they met, but this is the date marked to celebrate and it encompasses their whole story. For me, it’s actually the most important love story because it’s when Marilyn Teters married Richard (Dick) Lee. Many years later (let’s not get into the exact number), I was born.
They spent 17,296 days together and are only separated now by her death. Separated a short while – but what is time when they have eternity? I’ve often wondered if our time measurements on this side of the veil mean anything to those on the other side. Do they acknowledge birthdays? Remember anniversaries? I hope so. The dates may not mean as much on that side, but I hope mom recognized the day. And I hope she wasn’t alone. I hate the thought of her being alone.
“She’s at peace,” people from all walks of faith reassure us. Or a simple, “Sorry for your loss.” But I have to have hope that she is truly at peace or else I’ll go crazy.
Grief is a complex feeling. I feel sorrow for the loss of my mother. When a girl loses her momma, she misses her for the rest of her life. However, I also feel comfort and peace that she is all right. And I hope that my faith is true.
A few months ago, our small town was rocked by gossip. A stalwart local family suddenly became broken. Accusations and fingers pointed to the husband being unfaithful. Gossip becomes news in a small town. Dad and I discussed it while we washed the dishes one evening.
“What was he thinking?” dad asked.
I, of course, had no answer to give.
“I just don’t understand that,” my dad said disgusted. “Why would I ever want another woman when I had your mom?” I’ll admit, this statement made me proud of him. “When you have the best,” he continued, “why settle for less?”
I’m not saying it was the perfect union all the time. Because in our society we have this image of a perfect marriage being synonymous with trouble-free. They knew how to argue. They drove each other crazy at times. But at the end of the day, they knew they had each other and something worth fighting for.
It’s been 236 days since we said goodbye. I hope it’s going faster for her than it is for us.