Dear Tired,

Lifting tired arms, one letter at a time.

Dear Tired, I want to tell you an American love story.

Because every now and then, we all need a good love story along the journey of life. In the little things… in the little acts of kindness, great love is built. Today, let’s all choose to do the little things with great love.

Know that you are loved, Ryan

I absolutely love people. Every day people. We all meet fascinating people every day. Here are 2.

December 2015:

I sat down next to the most incredible couple on my flight from Houston to Charlotte, en route to home. We did not speak at all, but they told me stories with their actions that helped me feel like I’d known them for decades.

I later learned they had been married 67 years. Their love was palpable. Slight glances back and forth between the two communicated volumes of meaning that gave me pause – a refreshing change from my usual fast paced life.

Before we took off, they had fallen asleep holding hands and I didn’t want to bother them. I typically like to at least greet my seat-mates, but I instantly felt I was in the presence of great love that was better left undisturbed.

Every time the plane jostled him awake from his short naps, she would stir, stroke his arm, and lull him back to sleep. In between her checking on him, he checked on her when she fell back asleep. He’d reach to check her seatbelt every time there was any turbulence.

They were the embodiment of faithfulness (and sooooo adorable!!!). Two souls in love just as much today as they were 67 years ago when they married.

loveringsAt the end of the flight, all the passengers on the plane were in a rush to somewhere. As usual, people crammed the aisle and pushed forward.

But like fine wine, aging takes time.

Slowly, the husband and wife helped each other gather their belongings and walked down the aisle slowing, ensuring their steps were sound. Their slow movements forced all of us to slow, too.

We were all almost stopped. Some were disgruntled, but most disgruntled faces thawed.

The other delayed passengers and I smiled at each other, knowing while it was inconvenient to wait, we were observing a sacred love that is rarely seen so close.

67 years of marriage.

How did I know? When past them outside the gate, I started rushing to my next flight and then stopped, reversing course. I had to know their names.

Sensing their hearing was weakening, I leaned in and said:

“I ask your pardon for disturbing you.”

“No bother,” they replied.

“I’m sorry I didn’t speak with you on the plane. This is odd, but I was just so taken by your admiration for each other. May I just say that it was a joy to watch the way you love each other and it was an honor to sit next to you on the plane.”

“Son,” he replied, “my wife and I have been married for 67 years and we are in love.”

“May I ask your name?”, I asked.

“You may. We are the Loverings.” (pronounced like Love – reens)

“Wow. How fitting,” I said.

“Indeed. Enjoy your trip, son,” was his reply.

Enjoy your journey, friends. With eyes open – expecting to see love in others – we all may have far more fun and learn to love more deeply than we thought possible.

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