I’m sure you have heard the phrase “robbing the cradle.” Typically it refers to someone marrying a much younger person. People have teased me with that old saying upon discovering that I am two years older than my husband. Of course, he never lets me forget that fact, even though two years hardly qualifies in this case.
On a recent trip to the grocery store, my daughter and I met an older couple. As the wife turned around from the meat counter, she stumbled but caught herself. She came to a stop right in front of us. I asked if she was ok and said something like, “Oh, be careful!” Very helpful I’m sure, but she smiled and struck up a conversation.
We soon learned that this fashionably dressed, white-haired, make-up wearing woman was ninety-three years old! She shared her age proudly and thanked us as we commented on how amazing she looked. Obviously, this woman had some spunk.
As we continued to chat, her husband (I assumed) walked toward us. When something was mentioned about him watching out for her she laughed and said, “Oh yes he does. Well, I did rob the cradle.” Now mind you he was not a spring chicken and walked with a cane, but he had a precious smile. We chuckled as she shared that she was twelve years older than her husband. I quickly did the math in my head…so, that makes him eighty-one.
Just when I thought the story was finished, she shared more details. “I was married to my first husband for seventy years. And (pointing to her husband) we’ve only been married for three years.” It took a few minutes for my brain to wrap around what this precious lady was saying. Seventy years of marriage! What a story! I would imagine her current husband also had a story to tell, but he just smiled happily as she told hers.
Later I found myself wishing I could have spent more time with this sweet couple. Many questions came to my mind. How old was she when she first married? What had happened to her husband? Did she have any children? How did she meet her current husband? Answers I guess I will never have. Unless we happen to run into each other at the grocery store again…you can bet I will be keeping my eyes open.