A wedding gift

I am beginning this post with a glass of wine to my left, from a bottle my very good friend featured at her wine-country dream wedding last September. She was not a young bride, but her evening was filled with the joy we associate with youth, yet that is often better savored by people with more experience.

Late this afternoon, the snow started to fall. It was that sparkly type that comes when the temps are so low you wonder how people made it through winter before insulation and North Face. As the sky dimmed to evening, it took on that sepia cast that makes the gray less steely, though not quite golden. I thought about another friend who is getting married in midlife, this coming Friday.

A couple of months ago, she and I were at a girls’ weekend with about 16 other people, and we had a small celebration for her — the forty-something version of a bachelorette party. We started off with the topic of what’s sexy at 40, and there were plenty of hilarious responses. But there was a marked difference how she — not yet knowing we were honoring her upcoming marriage — described it. In her, I saw something that I’ve associated with youthfulness as my own marriage has matured. But I realized that night that it isn’t. When relationships take root, really begin to blossom, it doesn’t matter how old or experienced you are. That energy of beginnings might be even more beautiful with age.

I don’t know if long-term relationships ever see that point again — that giddiness and excitement. It’s not necessary because of the richness that they do bring. But it is wonderful to know that starting a life together holds the same spirit no matter what age it comes to you.

To my friend, best wishes on your big day and the decades that await! For you, one of the most beautiful wedding songs I know.

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