January 30, 2014

Max’s Musings – The Emotion of Valentine’s Day

By Max Molleston

Most of the writing efforts for February work with stealth or openness towards the special emotion for this month, LOVE. It is okay. It points us toward those we admire and love, so a sign of that affection can come forward. Lots of times we seem too shy to express our affections within our family and with close friends, and that is okay, too. We can still come forward with that special sign or gift of admiration.

I don’t want to range far off that path, but can I use some space to work into who we are as 50+ers? How have our feelings changed over the span of years we’ve achieved? Very much or not so much? Some would say, “not much.”

Roses are red,
Violets are Blue,
Sugar is sweet,
And I love You. (or, And so are You)

One of my high school girlfriends, and for a short time also in college, was nicknamed Sugar. Her dad had given her that moniker. I knew Sugar and liked Sugar. What more can be said? “Sugar is sweet” came very naturally in our relationship, not openly, but understood.

A side note about Sugar’s dad: He had been a basketball player at Clemson, later received his PhD, gained much recognition and importance in the community, and lived to the age of one-hundred-two. But I digress –

Many of us Midwesterners have been like that with our love relationships all our 50+lives. Some of us who have lost a mate through death or divorce can feel very strongly for a new love interest. Your writer believes you are capable of saying and being correct about “what you know and what you like.” I am guessing that knowing and liking appears to be seventy percent of what we say and do. Is it? The next 30 percent, rounding out the one-hundred, is mostly new experiences like music concerts, different than those of out youth, and places to travel that we do for reasons that vary. We also meet new people in that thirty percent space, which is purposeful, or accidental .

In the past century a female poet, Phyllis McGinley was no slouch, her poetry earning her a Pulitzer prize in 1961. The book title is “ Times Three” and it is light verse.

This large sample is the first and second stanza of three in “Recipe for a Marriage.”

John Anderson my jo, John,
When we were first acquaint,
I had a fault or so, John,
And you were less than saint.
But once we’d said a brave “I do”
And paid the parson’s fee,
I sat about reforming you
And you reforming me.”
John Anderson, my jo, John,
Our years have journeyed fair;
I think as couples go John,
We’ve made a pleasant pair.
For us, contented man and wife,
The marriage bond endures,
Since you have changed my way of life
And I have altered yours.

I’ve been exchanging correspondence with an old friend in agriculture extension, now in North Carolina. Following the ending of his second marriage, our extension expert “took the bull by the horns,” returned to his native state, New Jersey, reintroduced himself to a high school gal he’d dated, and she is now Missus.

However our love and affection makes itself known, we as humans will act and react in time-tested ways. Time continues to test me inside and outside these columns that have gone on for a decade. Join me here, in March.

Filed Under: Personal Growth