My cousin is 90 years old. She seriously doesn’t look a day over 89. (I know, I’m going to Hell)
She has been a part of life for all of my life and I didn’t really know her as a person until a few years ago. She moved a lot when I was a kid, so you never knew when she and her husband and two kids would suddenly pop in, broke and needing a meal or a bed for the night.
I asked some questions today, gently, about her past. I learned a few things that made me smile – she met her husband at a barn dance. But, she coyly told us, she didn’t dance with him that first night. She was dancing with another boy, so the next night, he wouldn’t let that boy near her and claimed every dance.
Picturing my cousin, who is frail and unsteady, as a young girl, dancing and flirting with the man she would marry and live with for 20 years (he died young) has made my heart feel sort of melty all day.
I wonder if her kids know this story. We left her with the promise to return next year although she said she couldn’t promise she’d be here. I told her to try!
Treasure the old ones, my friends, they have a story you should ask for.