Midlife love STILL rocks.

imagesI put a card on DF’s coffee cup this morning, even though we’d agreed to opt out of the Valentine’s Day hoopla.

“It’s a frugal card,” I assured him. “Hallmark sent it to me.”

Seriously: I’m a member of the company’s Gold Crown loyalty programs, and Hallmark recently mailed both a love-you card and a birthday card. I was supposed to have had them scanned at the store to earn extra points, but I keep forgetting to do that.

After two years of living together, DF and I still “delight in each other’s company,” as he puts it.

Do we ever. Whenever he walks into the room my heart still does a funny little dance, not unlike the kind you see in “A Charlie Brown Christmas.”

Sometimes I’ll glance up from reading or writing and catch him gazing at me with what I can only describe as a moon-eyed calf look.

Then he’ll grin ruefully at own besottedness and say, “I really love you.”

I still can’t quite believe that I found the perfect guy for me: smart, caring, well-read, a great conversationalist and the world’s greatest cuddler. DF is always thinking of and doing things for others. He’s more than fair in the division of household chores. Upon request he’ll play the theme from “Astro Boy” on the piano, but will also play Brahms’ Intermezzo in A, which he describes as “the universe in three pages.”

Is his performance as good as the one by Emanuel Ax? Of course not. Except that it’s actually better.


Love, uncommercialized

He listens when I speak – actually makes eye contact and, judging from his responses/answers, weighs my words carefully. (I make sure to do the same for him.) DF wakes up with a smile every day and a “Good morning, treasure” or “Good morning, beloved.” Hard to resist a guy who’s always cheerful even when cars break down or snow needs shoveling.

Every little thing I do is praised to the skies. And I do mean the smallest things. “You made Jello,” he’ll sigh, as though boiling up a kettle and opening a little box were culinary genius.

“Geeks in love,” he calls us. True. The fact that we find many of the same things fascinating and are willing to learn more about unknown topics is one more thing that unites us. Recently he read long sections of “Historians’ Fallacies: Toward a Logic of Historical Thought” aloud in the evenings — at my request.

And what was I doing while I listened? A jigsaw puzzle. Yep, we’re hopeless.

Dissecting the daily paper, listening to “Saturday Night at the Opera,” hanging clothes out on the line, walking to the post office, shredding home-grown red cabbage to pickle – each of these things, however mundane, is wonderful because we’re sharing it.

Incidentally, he did say “Happy Valentine’s Day, love” today. As did I. We’re not anti-Valentine, we’re just anti-commercialization. I believe that love is too important to relegate to a single square on the calendar. The fact that he demonstrates his love every day beats the hell out of an obligatory dozen roses every 14th of February.

So here’s to you, my friend, lover, court musician, punmeister, personal chef and staunchest supporter. Thanks for teaching me to recognize happiness. And thanks for providing the raw material.

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  1. That is so awesome, I’m happy for both of you and hope I can find “mid life love” as well! You are truly blessed.

  2. rosarugosa

    I’m so happy for you and DF, Donna! My DH and I have been married for 30 years, and you describe the deep contentment of an enduring love just perfectly!

  3. lostAnnfound

    that was more beautifully stated than any Hallmark card!

  4. Yay Donna! So happy for you. It is also so true that you can live a lovely, simple life with a partner, focused on what matters. Thanks for reminding us all about that.

  5. This is such a sweet reflection of your very touching relationship! You two sound a lot like my husband and I–we enjoy doing the simplest things together (which has the added benefit of being super frugal :)!). Makes me so happy to read about people who are so in love :).

  6. Thank you for sharing beautiful music, words and love!

  7. Awwwwwwwwww!

  8. Love this – sounds a lot like me and my hubby.

    I did give my guy the best Valentine ever – singing Valentine, delivered to him at work. With the added benefit of entertaining the residents at the nursing home where he works.

    And yes, it was frugal. I won it in a radio contest!

  9. Ro in San Diego

    Congratulations on finding that special someone and continuing to be in love! Life can be difficult and having a personal cheerleader in your corner is a precious gift that not everyone gets to experience. I am very happy for you both and am glad you are treasured by your DF. (As I loyal reader I’m pretty fond of you also).

    Yesterday we were treated to my 50-something sister-in-law being proposed marriage while enjoying BBQ dinner at our home. I was warned in advance to have the camera ready so we have evidence. It was very sweet.

    My husband and I have been together 32 years and will celebrate 30 years married tomorrow! We’re doing absolutely nothing tomorrow but will be taking a hiking and kayaking cruise from Juneau to Sitka in May.

    We’ve had some rough patches with my DF’s health so the quiet, and healthy days are treasured in our household.

    My DF still makes my heart skip a beat also…

  10. Ro in San Diego

    My DF should have been DH. (Didn’t mean to steal your acronym)..

  11. You brought tears to my eyes with this post. It is sweet and gives me hope that I may be able to find my own DF someday. Even if I don’t, I’m so glad you have. 🙂

  12. This had me breaking out a fresh box of tissues. I could feel your happiness as I read the words. Some people go their whole lives without this type of experience. Glad you got yours!

  13. melissa f

    That made me smile for sure! I like to think me an my hubby are soul mates as well. Happy belated Valentine’s Day to the both of you. Give your DF a great hello and thank you from your readers. Without him, we might have read something different, not that anything you write is or would be less interesting, but this was just so sweet at the perfect time. I hope you understand what I mean. Loved it! Maybe someday in the future we can read a guest post penned by DF…..

  14. Even after 60 years of marriage, i still need an occasional reminder of how fortunate I am to have found a soul mate way back when I was young and dumb. Thanks for sharing a beautiful tribute.

  15. Love!

  16. “I believe that love is too important to relegate to a single square on the calendar.” – poetic perfection! Love it. 🙂

  17. Aunt Leesie

    🙂 And he enjoys jazz concerts, too! LOVE the CD. Thanks. And thank you for sharing about your sweetheart. It’s heartwarming to read about your life with him.

    • Donna Freedman

      So glad the CD arrived unharmed; despite all the bubble wrap, you just never know. Happy that you’re enjoying it.

      • Aunt Leesie

        It came through the mail beautifully and we’re all enjoying it. How special to be able to appreciate musicians from Alaska! That’s the key, really, isn’t it? To a happy life, I mean. Being able to appreciate simple pleasures together.

  18. This made me smile!

  19. So beautiful thank you for sharing.

  20. Lovely post

  21. And may you have many more happy Valentine’s Days together!

  22. Love your writing! You really are so eloquent and I’m jealous. LOL. Been following you since your original post many years ago. So, so happy you have found “the one”. You deserve all your joy.

  23. Reading about your happiness makes me unreasonably happy. May you continue to share joy.God bless.

  24. Thank you for sharing that!
    I have to ask…when you found your DF, were you looking, or did it just kind of blindside you?
    After getting out of a 20 year marriage that was no longer safe for me to be in, being single would suit me just fine for the rest of my years. I know trust issues will be a huge roadblock for me. How did you get past that?

    • Donna Freedman

      Mine is a special case, i.e., he was an old friend (20-plus years) who became much, much more.
      And I wasn’t looking. In fact, I figured I’d be single forever because the idea of looking for the right person seemed too exhausting.
      I’m glad you’re out of a marriage that was “no longer safe.” It took me 23 years to get out of mine. Thanking God every day that I finally did.

  25. Lovely post! You remind me to look with fresh eyes at my wonderful husband and appreciate the great things he brings to our marriage.

  26. Punkin Pye

    He’s cute!

    • Donna Freedman

      You mean the video? That’s not DF, it’s Emanuel Ax. Unless you mean the cumulative description — if so, yes, he’s adorable and wonderful.

  27. ro in san diego

    Congratulations on finding someone who is as awesome as you deserve.


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